Data Centers

Report: Despite cloud growth, on premise data centers still dominate enterprise compute

While most companies are moving some of their workloads to the cloud, 65% of workloads remain in enterprise owned and operated data centers.

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Image: iStockphoto/Chesky_W

The majority of IT organizations are moving workloads to the cloud—but on-premise data centers remain the dominant choice for enterprises, according to a new report from Uptime Institute, released Monday.

Some 65% of enterprise workloads reside in enterprise owned and operated data centers—a number that has remained stable since 2014, the report found. Meanwhile, 22% of such workloads are deployed in colocation or multi-tenant data center providers, and 13% are deployed in the cloud, the survey found.

Explosive growth in business critical applications and data have led enterprises to continue to view the data center as essential to digital transformation strategies, Uptime Institute concluded in a press release.

"The survey findings reflect several key trends that are acting together as a powerful catalyst for change within the industry," said Matt Stansberry, senior director of content and publications at Uptime Institute, in a press release. "Increased performance at the processor level, further expansion of server virtualization, and the adoption of cloud computing have all created an IT foundation that differs greatly from those seen just 5 years ago."

SEE: The Cloud v. Data Center Decision (ZDNet)

Some 95% of IT professionals said they had migrated critical applications and IT infrastructure to the cloud over the past year, according to another recent survey from SolarWinds. That survey also found that nearly half of enterprises were still dedicating at least 70% of their yearly budget to traditional, on-premise applications, potentially pointing to growing demand for a hybrid infrastructure, TechRepublic's Conner Forrest noted.

With these changes, "enterprise-owned data centers have remained a central component," Stansberry said in the release. "We urge data center and IT professionals to focus on the business aspects of running their IT foundation, creating sets of repeatable processes to make it work efficiently and adopting new technologies and solutions when the business demands it."

The seventh-annual survey included responses from more than 1,000 data center and IT professionals worldwide.

With the prevalence of on-prem data centers, these budgets remain a priority this year: Nearly 75% of companies' data center budgets increased or stayed consistent in 2017, compared to 2016, the survey found.

SEE: Cloud computing policy template (Tech Pro Research)

IT resilience is also growing, as 68% of enterprises said they rely on IT-based resiliency, using an IT architecture with multiple, geographically-distributed data centers to better protect applications in the event of an outage.

Outages have become a major worry: More than 90% of data center and IT professionals surveyed said they believe their corporate management is more concerned about outages now than they were a year ago. And while 90% of organizations conduct root cause analysis of an IT outage, only 60% said that they measure the cost of downtime as a business metric, the report found. Major outages such as that of AWS in February, which took some business customers offline and caused slowdowns for others, have highlighted some of the risks associated with the cloud.

The 3 big takeaways for TechRepublic readers

1. Despite the growth of the cloud, 65% of company workloads remain in enterprise owned and operated data centers, according to a new report from Uptime Institute.

2. On-prem solutions remain dominant in the enterprise due to massive growth in business critical applications and data for digital transformation, Uptime Institute said.

3. Data center funding remains strong, the report found, with 75% of enterprise data center budgets increasing or staying the same in 2017, compared to 2016.

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About Alison DeNisco Rayome

Alison DeNisco Rayome is a Staff Writer for TechRepublic. She covers CXO, cybersecurity, and the convergence of tech and the workplace.

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