By Brett Anderson, Senior Director, HPE Solutions, Logicalis US

While workloads are definitely moving to the cloud and the desire for that kind of consumption-based model is fueling the pace, the need for hybrid and on-premise infrastructure is still very real. As a result, if your workloads are better suited to hybrid or on-premise environments, you may want to re-examine how you’re managing your on-prem resources with the expectation that you can achieve the same kind of financial and capacity flexibility that a public cloud has to offer.

One of the chief reasons moving data to the cloud is so appealing to organizations today is that it gives them the ability to shift infrastructure payments from significant capital outlays to a more modest operational expense (op-ex) that scales up or down according to actual usage. Industry experts say most IT purchases will be made on this kind of op-ex, cloud-like, subscription basis within the next four years, which makes CIOs wonder if that same op-ex payment structure is possible for on-premise infrastructure today – and it’s the idea behind what I think is an intriguing new offering from HPE: Flexible Capacity.

Historically, leasing has been the way to move from cap-ex to op-ex costs for on-prem data center infrastructure.  While leasing does offer advantages in some cases, there are two problems with leasing that a Flexible Capacity solution from HPE can resolve.  First, in a traditional lease, you order the hardware your organization needs today and what you think you’ll need two to five years from now, paying for all of it starting on day one. The assets remain fixed throughout the life of the lease which means there’s no ability to scale up or down as business needs change. Second, in a traditional lease, there are no infrastructure management services included, which means these services must be either be provided in house or purchased from a third party separately, adding additional monthly costs.

HPE’s Flexible Capacity, a twist on the traditional lease, offers a creative solution to both of these issues. Rather than overprovisioning up front – and paying now – to meet future demand, under the Flexible Capacity model, the goal is to architect a solution that meets your organization’s current baseline requirements plus a defined degree of anticipated growth, but not pay for that growth until it’s used.

With a built-in monitoring service, your organization gains the ability to burst up and scale back as business needs change – just as you would in a public cloud – and to have your monthly bill reflect only that capacity that is actually being consumed.  This is an ideal solution for companies that are experiencing significant growth, are undergoing business transformation, or who have seasonal workload demands. This also works well if you want to roll out consistent data center solutions in multiple locations over time; the solutions can be designed and delivered all at once, ensuring commonality across sites or regions while each site’s billing begins only when its solution is powered up.

In particular, Flexible Capacity is a great play for hyperconverged solutions because you’re getting a combination of compute capacity, network capacity, memory and storage capacity, which means you can easily grow by simply turning on additional nodes. If you need 12 nodes, for example, we might deliver a solution that has 16, but not charge you for the additional four until you start using them.

Additionally, Flexible Capacity financing allows your organization to roll in proactive infrastructure management services from HPE. These services – which include monitoring, patching, firmware updates and pre-failure event mediation – allow you to offload the daily care and management of your on-prem data center infrastructure just as you would with a public cloud service.

Want to learn more? If you’ve reached the proverbial fork in the road when it comes to storage solutions, you’re not alone. The demands for data storage have never been more demanding; start by exploring data and storage management topics on the Logicalis US website. Then, to find out what HPE Flexible Capacity can do for you, drop us an email at info@us.logicalis.com or call us at 866-456-4422.  We’ve made some changes to our Financial Services department as well, so ask us how we can help you expand your IT purchasing options. If you’re interested in the bigger, industrywide picture, read this blog that discusses what “digital transformation” means to CIOs worldwide, then find out what over 700 CIOs around the world consider their biggest challenges as they work to become digital organizations: http://ow.ly/ZdZE305wRH6.