SMBs Ready to Embrace Hybrid Clouds

Hybrid clouds are gaining momentum among U.S. small businesses and are becoming entrenched in the midmarket.

That’s according to a new survey from Techaisle, which says hybrid cloud accounts for 18 percent of cloud-using SMBs and will be the approach of choice for 28 percent in 2015, an increase of 56 percent. Hybrid cloud accounts for 32 percent of cloud-using midmarket businesses today, and is expected to capture a similar proportion of new spending in the next year.

The survey of 1,455 U.S. SMBs also reveals that use of "hybrid-only" cloud is expected to increase by 87 percent. The proportion of all SMBs using combination of private and hybrid cloud is expected to more than double, and use of all three (public/private/hybrid) clouds is expected to increase even more.

Even SMBs that are pursuing public or private Clouds are ripe for hybrid cloud in the future, Techaisle said. In small businesses, the survey shows that half of those planning new cloud initiatives in 2015 are looking to implement private cloud – in effect, using internal infrastructure to deliver on-demand services. However, these firms will most likely hit the limit of their internal resources and bridge to external cloud when they do so.

Breaking it down further, 42 percent of cloud-using small businesses are currently using only private cloud, less than 20 percent are using only public cloud and an even smaller percentage are using only a hybrid approach connecting public and private clouds. This means that their cloud journey to date has consisted of using internal resources to deliver on-demand services.

Survey data also reveals that many small businesses are using more than one cloud approach. Fifteen percent are using both public and private cloud for discrete purposes and not configured as part of a single delivery infrastructure.

Techaisle’s SMB cloud survey data also show that less than 40 percent of cloud-using midmarket businesses rely on a single delivery approach for cloud. One quarter use only private cloud and one-third use two different delivery approaches, with the most common being a combination of private and hybrid cloud or private/public cloud.

Techaisle says that the survey data suggest that selection of a public vs. private vs. hybrid cloud strategy is not a “religious issue” and that SMBs are selecting the best approach for their requirements — and they change approaches in response to changing business needs. The decision to use one or two or three cloud delivery models is also a result of IT finding that the best way to use cloud across a wider range of business requirements is to deploy a wider range of clouds.

Follow senior online managing editor @Craig_Galbraith on Twitter.

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