CIOs believe that cloud infrastructure and practices will undergo drastic changes in 2021; both permanent and temporary fundamental changes are expected
2020 initiated the deployment of fundamental changes that impacted nearly every quarter in the business world. As the impact continues into 2021, cloud computing will also evolve to harmonize in the new reality.
Remote work and mobility
CIOs say that the recently created remote workforce has had a significant impact on the office environment. Enterprise IT needs to be ready to face the changes as so many employees leave the on-premise workplace.
Work from home practice will further boost the migration away from geographically focused IT services to cloud-driven solutions that can be accessed from any location that has an internet connection. For this measure to be a success, leaders say that devices, networks, and applications will need to be rethought and re-implemented.
It is predicted that even voice services will be shifted to the cloud. Help desk and customer service operations will be required to embrace the change by leveraging CCaaS (Contact Centre-as-a-Service) and UCaaS (Unified Communications-as-a-Service) solutions. This will be in addition to the tech innovations (which will definitely include trackers) to allow managers and supervisors to handle remote employees.
Employee migration will also modify how the data flows in networks. Such practices have a direct impact on the Edge computing and networking strategies. Eric Troyer, CMO at Megaport, says,” The distribution of how data flows has been upended by the widespread shift to remote work and will force organizations to reevaluate and redefine their networking and edge computing strategies continually.
The pandemic has spurred many people to migrate away from the major cities, which means businesses will need to figure out how to support their distributed workforce with their existing infrastructure. As such, we’ll see more of a focus on tier 2 and tier 3 cities like Nashville and Minneapolis, compared to the emphasis on cities like San Francisco and New York pre-pandemic. “
As organizations shift physical hardware to employee-owned, DaaS (Desktop-as-a-Service) and VDI (Virtual Desktop Infrastructure) will become more popular. Many organizations are considering implementing SD-WANs (Software Defined Wide Area Networks) compared to the cost per square foot of on-premise office space.
Latency is the main issue for connectivity. It will arise from variations in internet speeds in domestic neighborhoods. Wi-Fi speeds differ depending on the time of day, usage, and location. Bigger organizations have tried to compensate for this issue from their side by implementing business-grade connections to vital resources.
More on-premises services shift to the cloud and increased data breaches
CIOs predicted way back in March 2020 that enterprises with on-premises infrastructure would move a large volume of their services to a cloud platform that is co-location or managed infra. While many organizations had already started the process, however, the pandemic has accelerated the journey considerably.
The sudden acceleration in the shift to cloud platforms also resulted in increased incidents of data breaches. Due to the lockdown, enterprises found it difficult to source the secured devices to be transported to the employees. Increased use of unsecured and personal devices resulted in an easier time for threat actors to exploit the network. John Ayers, Chief Strategy Product Officer at Nuspire, says,” Businesses moved to the cloud, courtesy of the COVID-19 pandemic; however, the increasing confidence in public, private and hybrid data cloud paved the way for new hurdles.
Cloud-based security issues owing to misconfigured security measures and lack of monitoring give way for stricter security protocols and security testing capabilities. The accelerated cloud adoption means an increase in trust in infrastructure security.”
Protecting cloud-based remote employees in 2021 is expected to take place in two formats dependent on the enterprise size. Organizations that can afford it will likely embrace a zero-trust security model similar to SASE. For organizations that can’t afford to will likely adopt pre-existing solutions like DNS security. Employee training will mandatorily play a critical role regardless of the defense mechanism.