The cloud has become a major technology tool over the past couple of years, and it will only continue to grow and evolve as a resource in years to come.

Here are five cloud computing trends to plan for as the cloud continues to grow and evolve:

1. Formal decision frameworks facilitate cloud investment optimization: The cloud offers many benefits including lower overall costs and reduced complexity. However, the cloud also has a number of challenges, including security and integration needs. In order to use the cloud most effectively it is important to think through these benefits and challenges before taking action.

2. Hybrid cloud computing is an imperative: Hybrid cloud computing is the combination of cloud computing services and application services. The hybrid cloud may lead to a unified model where a single cloud is made up of multiple cloud platforms, which could be used as needed. Organizations need to be proactive in linking these services to prepare for a hybrid environment.

3. Cloud brokerage will facilitate cloud consumption: Over the last couple of years more and more individuals have decided to use the cloud without involving IT. This has led to an increased interest in the cloud services brokerage (CSB). IT departments should combat this challenge by positioning themselves within the organization as a place to come for advice and support.

4. Cloud-centric design becomes a necessity: Moving to the cloud isn’t just about moving all of your existing workloads to the cloud; it is about fully utilizing all that the cloud has to offer in order to make your work quicker and simpler. In order to use the cloud to its full potential, organizations need to look beyond their migration to the cloud and look to how they can best design and apply the cloud for their organizational needs.

5. Cloud computing influences future data center and operational models: It is beneficial for organizations to implement the concepts of their cloud computing to other parts of their organization, such as their data center. This will provide the organization with continuity and increase data center agility and efficiency.

Do you think these trends are ripe and will help organizations proactively address the future of the cloud? Or are they just hype?

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