By Candida Valois, field CTO, Scality
Is your chief financial officer (CFO) asking for a cost-containment exercise? When it’s time to tighten the belt, consider evolving to hybrid-cloud with object storage at the foundation.
Consider this: An analysis by IDC found that the financial benefits of modern object storage include:
- 59% reduction in total cost of operations
- 65% reduction in cost of storage capacity
- 366% 5-year return on investment (ROI)
It’s been said a million times, but it’s worth repeating — data capacity usage is rising by 10% to 25% a quarter, and at a time when organizations are trying to do more with less, this comes as unwelcome news. But object storage can help provide more storage with less expense — and ease the pain of some of the biggest challenges IT teams are facing today.
Three major factors making life harder for IT professionals
Ongoing financial uncertainty: While the economy seems to be seeing some signs of bouncing back, most organizations aren’t ready to loosen their belts yet. In the first half of 2023, planned layoffs quadrupled. This year’s tech layoffs far outpaced those of 2022.
At the same time, Gartner predicts enterprise spending on software and IT services will increase 9.3% and 5.5%, respectively, this year even as hardware spending goes down. The bottom line is there’s still a lot of uncertainty, and CIOs will be making hard decisions about IT spending prioritization. The name of the game continues to be trying to do more with less.
Nonstop threats: Cybercriminals don’t wait for a stronger economy. They create their own by attacking at all times. According to Veeam’s 2023 Ransomware Trends Report, 85% of corporate and IT leaders reported at least one ransomware attack in the year prior; 93% of these attacks targeted backup repositories. Of the 80% of victims that paid a ransom, 21% could still not recover their data. The truth is that rising ransomware threats mean backup has become one of the most important use cases for enterprises across industries.
Supply chain issues: Though analysts believe that supply chain disruptions will be somewhat less severe in 2023, that doesn’t necessarily indicate that we’re out of the woods. To bypass reliance on potentially delayed hardware shipments, IT teams can anticipate that more companies will choose cloud- and hardware-agnostic approaches. In the end, the notion of being forced to use only one vendor will no longer be viable.
The rise of cloud
Notwithstanding the economic instability that lies ahead, cloud-native is predicted to become mainstream as enterprises aim to freeze investment in their older systems and spend more on newer technologies, according to Forrester’s Predictions 2023 report. In fact, the analyst firm projected that 40% of businesses will adopt a cloud-native-first strategy.
We are also seeing some hardware companies offer an “as-a-service” model, such as HPE GreenLake, which is a storage-as-a-service (STaaS) offering. Much like cloud providers sell a managed cloud service to customers, STaaS is a managed storage service.
The public cloud primarily relies on object storage to manage large volumes of unstructured data. Why? Because of its unlimited scale-out capabilities and the fact that it’s less expensive to store huge data volumes with object storage than traditional alternatives like block or disk-based storage. It can help keep the cost of data storage down over time.
Benefits of modern software-defined object storage as a supplement to public cloud
Cloud cost containment is a continued priority for tech leaders this year as they have the green light to continue to make cloud investments. Leaders are also increasingly concerned about security in the cloud and trusting their sensitive data to a third-party vendor.
Rather than a fully public cloud approach, it makes more sense to build a hybrid environment that takes advantage of all the benefits of public cloud while also optimizing costs with data storage on-prem. That’s a viable strategy to reduce expenses — especially during lean times.
A hybrid-cloud strategy with software-defined S3 object storage is more cost-effective, giving organizations benefits that include:
Flexibility without lock-in: Because modern software-defined object storage solutions can be deployed in a variety of formats — including hybrid cloud, multi-cloud and others — IT teams enjoy flexibility and scalability without hardware or public cloud lock-in.
Organizations benefit from on-premises, cloud-like data services that help meet data sovereignty goals and needs by providing security and more control over their data.
High scalability and durability: Because of the scalability, businesses don’t need to invest in new tools or solutions, even during periods of rapid expansion and supply chain issues. That’s comparable to having a private cloud.
Furthermore, with object storage, IT teams aren’t required to buy more capacity than they need. Similar to the public cloud, one system can handle hundreds of applications at once, making storage more cost-efficient and manageable. It provides dependable services without the risks associated with public cloud storage. For all of their applications, enterprise customers have access to infinitely scalable storage with high availability and extreme durability — at a reasonable price.
No hidden fees: Another major bonus? With a software-defined object storage solution like Scality, there are no ingress or egress charges, no early deletion or embargo fees, and no costs linked to storage regions — a huge differentiator from the high, unpredictable fees imposed by public cloud storage providers.
For scaling companies, the magnitude of potential savings from optimization is evident. Customers looking to maintain flexibility, prevent bill shock and avoid cloud vendor lock-in are repatriating cloud workloads to the data center or moving to a hybrid-cloud model, especially when they realize just how much they’re paying over time and at scale.
Ransomware protection: If your data is locked up or unavailable due to a ransomware attack, your organization is losing money every second. The best option is to ensure your data is protected, even in the event of such an attack. Bulletproof ransomware protection that includes immutability and backup protection as part of your storage strategy is the ultimate money-saver and insurance plan for when cybercriminals strike.
Taking an economical approach to data growth for lower storage costs
Enterprises immersed in today’s quickly changing digital landscape inevitably face issues related to rapid data growth. In general, scale-out storage infrastructures outperform scale-up, server-based ones in terms of facilitating easy and non-disruptive expansion, IT agility and easier management.
Object storage offers the additional benefits of enormous capacity, built-in high data durability and availability, multi-level data protection and substantially less expensive storage infrastructure than traditional or public cloud storage. It’s a smart approach that organizations can leverage to do more with less during lean times. And as more organizations look to a hybrid approach, object storage is the perfect partner.