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Effectively managing a hybrid cloud environment

By , Expert Solution Architect, BCX.
19 Feb 2024
Dr Karen Luyt, Expert Solution Architect at BCX.
Dr Karen Luyt, Expert Solution Architect at BCX.

The adoption of hybrid cloud has emerged as the preferred strategic choice for organisations, driven by the imperative to strike a balance between the advantages of public cloud services and the imperative for control and security essential for on-premises infrastructure. According to market research firm IDC, cloud adoption in South Africa is growing rapidly, with organisations in the country increasingly embracing hybrid cloud and multi-cloud.

Offering the best of both worlds, a hybrid cloud solution means an organisation uses a mix of on-premises, public cloud, and private cloud infrastructure, while multi-cloud refers to the way organisations use multiple cloud providers for more than one cloud deployment of the same type – for instance, if they use public clouds from two different vendors.

This means that certain data, applications, and services within an organisation may be hosted internally in a private cloud environment, while others are situated in a public cloud managed by a third-party provider. Furthermore, certain data and applications may reside on physical servers located within the organisation’s premises. In 2021, the global hybrid cloud market was valued at $85 billion, and it is expected to reach $262 billion in 2027.

With the rise of hybrid cloud adoption, organisations need to tread carefully in order to reap the desired benefits. Managing hybrid cloud environments effectively requires careful planning, robust tools and processes, and a well-thought-out strategy. This is mainly because while hybrid cloud environments offer many benefits, such as flexibility and scalability, they also come with their own set of challenges.


Security and compliance are some of the major issues when it comes to hybrid cloud management. When applications are deployed across multiple cloud environments, they must establish connections to interact and exchange data. Consequently, ensuring the security and encryption of traffic between these clouds is imperative.

Hybrid clouds also introduce additional security concerns. Data and applications may be distributed across various environments, making it challenging to maintain consistent security controls and access policies. Compliance with industry regulations can also become more complex.

Creating an end-to-end secure connection between multiple cloud infrastructures becomes challenging, primarily when the networking models differ. Oftentimes, the security features of each cloud offering focus on protecting their services and infrastructure.

Also, at times, organisations assume that their cloud service provider will take care of all facets of cloud security and believe that once the service is operational, there won’t be a necessity to further safeguard their cloud environment.

Cloud security is a shared responsibility between all the parties involved and organisations must be cognisant of the fact that securing a hybrid cloud environment is essential to protect data, applications, and resources distributed across both on-premises and public cloud platforms.

“Remember that security is an ongoing process, and it’s important to adapt your security measures as your hybrid cloud environment evolves and as new threats emerge. Remember to regularly review and update your security strategy to address changing needs and risks,” comments, Dr Karen Luyt, Expert Solution Architect at BCX.

Data and Resource Integration

Managing a hybrid environment can be complex due to the need to integrate and coordinate resources across on-premises infrastructure and multiple cloud providers.

Data integration is a hiccup organisations face in a hybrid cloud environment. Ensuring seamless data integration and consistency between on-premises and cloud environments can be challenging. This is primarily because data may need to be transferred, transformed, and synchronised between different locations, which can introduce latency and potential data inconsistencies.

This integration is essential for achieving seamless data access, sharing, and analysis in a hybrid cloud setup.

Cost Management

Additionally, cost management can be challenging in hybrid cloud environments, as it is important to track and optimise expenses across multiple platforms and providers. Without proper monitoring and governance, costs can quickly escalate.

“Cost management in a hybrid cloud environment is crucial to optimise spending while maintaining the benefits of both on-premises and cloud infrastructure,” Luyt adds.

“Effective cost management in a hybrid cloud environment requires a combination of tools, policies, and best practices applied through coded algorithms. Regularly review and adjust your cloud environments to ensure you are optimising your costs while meeting your organisation’s performance and scalability requirements.”


Managing a hybrid cloud environment often requires a mix of skills in cloud technologies, on-premises infrastructure, and hybrid cloud management tools. Finding and retaining staff with the necessary expertise can be challenging for organisations.

“Overall, skills are the foundation for successfully managing a hybrid cloud environment. They enable organisations to harness the benefits of both on-premises and cloud infrastructure while effectively addressing the unique challenges and complexities that hybrid environments present,” she notes.

In Closing

“Effectively managing a hybrid cloud environment offers organisations the agility, scalability, cost control, and security needed to meet modern IT challenges while leveraging the strengths of both on-premises and cloud resources,” concludes Luyt.

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