As more healthcare organizations realize the need to move some applications to the cloud while maintaining critical data onsite, hybrid IT environments are becoming the norm. The benefits of hybrid IT to healthcare organizations can be significant as the volume of patient data increases and organizations look for cost-effective ways to manage this growth. Moreover, healthcare organizations that operate in multiple time zones and with varying levels of activity throughout the day reap the benefits of being able to provision their compute needs to reduce downtime and latency. Hybrid IT also simplifies the issue of compliance when it comes to the varying levels of regulations that exist today.
As the benefits of hybrid cloud IT environment introduce complexities, IT professionals must devise new methods to monitor and manage their IT environment while delivering the quality of service end-users expect. Through all of this, a few things are clear: no healthcare organization is the same, so health IT professionals must arm themselves with the right skills and expertise to effectively manage their evolving IT infrastructure. Below are some of the recommendations on how to do so from the experts at SolarWinds, adapted from their SolarWinds IT Trends Report 2017:
• Ensure visibility across environments. As more organizations continue to manage disparate workloads, having a monitoring platform in place that can serve as the “single point of truth” is critical. Having visibility across the data center will allow health IT professionals to more proactively identify problems and solve them quicker.
• Consider more than just cost efficiency. Today, more organizations are reporting concerns with security, performance and compliance in the cloud rather than cost. In today’s on-demand environments, health IT professionals must factor in security and performance requirements of each application prior to cloud migration.
• “Cloud-proof” your job. As IT takes on a more collaborative approach, having hybrid monitoring and management skills, application migration, automation and data analytics knowledge are key to managing hybrid environments. Healthcare organizations should establish monitoring practices to drive a more efficient and effective IT management strategy.
• Forecast future migration, but remain flexible. Every hybrid IT environment is unique and IT professionals must be agile and open to adopting best practices, including having visibility into the entire stack with hybrid monitoring tools and building processes for migration. To plan for the future, you should build an IT roadmap that will help illustrate your return or lack thereof.
• Built trust with cloud service providers through IT competency. Ensure you’re running a competent IT organization by architecting multiple cloud strategies that avoid downtime due to single point of failure. Implement best practices and make sure you’re spread across a variety of regions with a highly distributed workload.
Every healthcare organization and IT department is different, and as such, must weigh the benefits and risks of hybrid cloud adoption as it pertains to them. By ensuring your IT organization is armed with the knowledge and expertise needed to successfully manage these new interconnected environments, you’ll be well on your way to a smooth hybrid IT transition.
Interested in learning more? Find out how SolarWinds is helping IT professionals monitor and manage their infrastructure from on-premises to the cloud here.