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New report highlights top trends around hybrid cloud adoption

Nearly all (96.2%) businesses in Asia Pacific (APAC) see cloud as critical to meeting immediate business needs amid uncertainty, according to the new NTT Hybrid Cloud Report.

The report reveals the main drivers behind hybrid cloud adoption. It highlights the critical need for business agility, and the role hybrid cloud has had on helping businesses achieve this.

Before COVID-19, many companies had embarked on digital transformation journeys, but the pandemic highlighted that many were not as agile as they had previously thought, NTT states.

According to the report, the pandemic laid bare deficiencies in businesses cloud infrastructure, security and network architecture capabilities, hindering their ability to adapt and remain agile.

Despite uncertainties, the pandemic has provided a significant opportunity to accelerate digital transformation initiatives, NTT states.

The report, which conducted research with 950 decision-makers in 13 countries across five regions in APAC, highlighted the increasing reliance on technology.

It found that 90.0% of APAC businesses agree that pandemic has forced its business to rely on technology more than ever before.

60.3% of APAC organisations globally are already using, or piloting hybrid cloud, and 31.6% plan to implement a hybrid solution within 12-24 months.

The report found that an improved speed of deployment of apps and services is the biggest driver (38.8%) of hybrid cloud adoption in APAC.

This is especially true given the shift to a distributed workforce model where businesses in this region now need to access data and applications in new, different and often complex ways.

According to APAC respondents, the second largest motivation for hybrid cloud adoption is an overall improvement of business agility (38.3%), followed by a more efficient total cost of IT operations (34.0%).

Beyond maximising cost efficiencies, businesses are also charged with changing attitudes to security and compliance and the complexities of implementing hybrid cloud.

The report found that more than half of the respondents in APAC (51.2%) claim that the difficulties in managing data security is the greatest barrier to adopting hybrid cloud.

To overcome these barriers when working in such complex environments, organisations must choose the right environment that will securely host their mission-critical applications across public and private clouds, and work with a partner who understands the industries they're working in to ensure compliance, NTT states.

The report found that network performance and a shortage of skills were also regarded as sizeable barriers to hybrid cloud adoption.

Both, if not appropriately addressed when implementing the cloud could undo the benefits it offers.

Industry collaboration and working with external experts will provide businesses with the right knowledge and skills to set up their hybrid cloud environments for agility, NTT states.

On types of partner used, 70.8% of businesses said they engaged with systems integrators, while 55.4% engaged with specialist information security consultants or managed security service providers (MSSPs).

NTT executive vice president of intelligent infrastructure Rob Lopez says, “As businesses look to navigate the new year, they must look to hybrid cloud environments that are optimised for agility, security and supported by the right network architecture while also meeting compliance requirements.

"This is the foundation upon which cloud is successful and will enable businesses to weather any form of disruption that comes their way.”