Cloud-Based Disaster Recovery Barriers And Drivers In The Enterprise

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1 A Custom Technology Adoption Profile Commissioned By IBM Cloud-Based Disaster Recovery Barriers And Drivers In The Enterprise March 2012 Introduction Enterprise IT professionals today face a serious challenge: Their customers expect services to be delivered to them 24x7x365 in a seamless fashion and without data loss. Concurrently, data growth is explosive, environments are becoming more heterogeneous and complex, and budgets remain stagnant. The necessity of building a disaster recovery model to ensure that services can be delivered nonstop with minimal data loss is not easy or inexpensive. Companies continue to explore the available options and methods of disaster recovery that seem to be most beneficial to business in today s market. The traditional approaches in disaster recovery force organizations to choose between cost and speed, leaving many applications inadequately protected. Running disaster recovery environments in the cloud offers companies an alternative, allowing for rapid recovery and minimal data loss, and without the high costs. With that said, a few specific challenges could arise, and firms are making it a priority to purchase or upgrade their disaster recovery and business continuity capabilities. This Technology Adoption Profile examines the importance of these capabilities, along with global enterprises interest in leveraging an externally hosted (i.e., public) cloud for disaster recovery. Disaster Recovery-As-A-Service Is A Critical Necessity For Global Enterprises In our annual hardware survey of IT decision-makers, we asked about firms plans to adopt disaster recovery-as-aservice (DRaaS), also sometimes known as IT recovery-as-a-service, based on virtual infrastructure at the service provider. Forrester defines DRaaS as prepackaged solutions that provide a standard DR failover to a cloud environment that you can buy on a pay-per-use basis with varying rates based upon RPO and RTO. We learned that 23% of enterprises are expanding/upgrading their implementation of DRaaS or planning to implement in the next 12 months (see Figure 1). Additionally, 36% of enterprises said that they were interested but had no plans for immediate adoption. For a new and emerging technology, these are high levels of adoption and interest, most likely driven by enterprises focus on upgrading disaster recovery and business continuity capabilities 56% listed it as a top hardware/it infrastructure priority (see Figure 2).

2 Figure 1 Two-Thirds Of Enterprises Are Interested In, Or Have Already Adopted, DRaaS What are your firm s plans to adopt IT-recovery-as-a-service based on virtual infrastructure at the service provider? Expanding/upgrading implementation Planning to implement Not interested Implemented, not expanding Interested but no plans 5% 5% 13% 36% 36% Source: Forrsights Hardware Survey, Q3 2011, Forrester Research, Inc. Base: 1,290 global IT decision-makers Figure 2 The Majority Of Enterprises See Upgrading BC/DR Capabilities As A High Or Critical Priority Is the purchase or upgrade of disaster recovery and business continuity capabilities a top hardware/it infrastructure priority of your firm/organization over the next 12 months? Critical priority 16% High priority 40% Low priority 32% Not on our agenda 10% Source: Forrsights Hardware Survey, Q3 2011, Forrester Research, Inc. Base: 2,343 global IT decision-makers Page 2

3 Improving Disaster Recovery Has Led Firms To Adopt The Cloud And Virtualization Enterprise organizations around the world are learning that any minute of downtime in their system has direct effects on revenue, customer loyalty, and worker productivity. Although technology continues to advance, IT leaders still struggle with disaster recovery due to complexity, risk, and other priorities. As we move into 2012, decision-makers are continuing to look to the cloud and virtualization as a way of improving their infrastructure. Purchasing and upgrading disaster recovery capabilities have been priorities, and companies are seeking ways to bring the two together. Sixty-seven percent of global IT decision-makers indicated that improving DR and business continuity was important to planning or implementing IaaS, and 80% stated that it was important to planning or implementing x86 virtualization (see Figure 3). Figure 3 How Important Was Improved Disaster Recovery And Business Continuity In Your Firm s Decision To Adopt The Following? Cloud X86 virtualization ImportantVery important Neutral Not important/not at all important 67% 18% 14% 80% 13% 7% Base: 307 global IT decision-makers planning or implemented IaaS *Base: 1,024 global IT decision-makers planning or implemented x86 virtualization Source: Forrsights Hardware Survey, Q3 2011, Forrester Research, Inc. Interest In Disaster Recovery In The Cloud Forrester defines cloud-based DR solutions as falling into one of three main categories: do it yourself (DIY), DR-asa-service (DRaaS), and cloud-to-cloud disaster recovery (C2C DR). Each model has a distinct set of benefits. The DIY DR in the cloud model is both flexible and cost-effective but requires expertise in both the cloud and DR from the firm s infrastructure and operations (I&O) team. DRaaS prepackaged solutions are purchased on a pay-per-use basis from service providers who either deploy agents to replicate data and applications or use image-based backups to send data to the cloud. C2C DR is the least common of the three but is certainly on the rise, as it allows companies the ability to failover infrastructure from one cloud data center to another. In January 2012, IBM commissioned Forrester Consulting to take a closer look at how IT decision-makers in the US, the UK, and India are provisioning disaster recovery today. In a survey of 75 respondents, 63% said they are doing their DR provisioning work in-house, and the remaining 37% are outsourcing to a managed services provider (see Figure 4). The majority of organizations that outsource their disaster recovery today work with a traditional cold site provider or a managed service provider. 1 Longer term, Forrester expects this split to shift more Page 3

4 toward outsourced as more options for cloud-based disaster recovery are brought to market, solutions mature, and more major, trusted vendors enter the market. Figure 4 The Majority Of Enterprises Provision DR Capabilities In-House Today What is your primary method for provisioning disaster recovery today? In-house 63% Outsourced to a managed services provider 37% Base: 75 global IT decision-makers Source: A commissioned study conducted by Forrester Consulting on behalf of IBM, February 2012 We further explored for which pieces of their disaster plans these firms leverage the cloud or other IT recovery-asa-service solutions. More than a third of respondents (39%) are interested in using the cloud as a recovery site (i.e., DIY DR in the cloud) and/or in DR-as-a-service or managed cloud recovery service (see Figure 5). Additionally, 27% and 21% of respondents claimed they had plans to deploy DIY DR in the cloud and DRaaS, respectively. The cloud has proven to be a successful option for many services and products, and clearly, DR is the latest. Enterprises Look To The Cloud For Faster Recovery And Lower-Cost DR Similar to other emerging technology trends, solutions, and/or services, there are both advantages and challenges for the early adopters. Benefits include more flexible pricing options and faster recovery, with easier, more frequent, and less expensive testing. More than half (55%) of respondents surveyed expressed interest in adopting cloudbased DR for faster recovery, and another 45% placed a priority on overall cost savings. Since spending on BC/DR has remained stagnant at around 5% of IT operating and capital budgets for the past several years, it s not surprising that enterprises are looking for a solution that can do more with less. 2 Rounding out the top three was the ease of testing, another common pain-point for enterprises (see Figure 5). 3 One of the biggest barriers historically with testing is limited staff resources, and taking DR to the cloud allows for automation and less manual attention from IT staff. As this trend is still in the early phases of adoption, there are, of course, additional barriers. Security and compliance are more difficult to achieve when in the cloud. This has been seen as the top barrier to public cloud adoption, and DR is no different, as enterprises need to adhere to the same security policies. However, as 87% of survey respondents are interested in, or already using, cloud-based DR solutions today, these concerns can be Page 4

5 overcome. Another common adoption barrier is that enterprises have many applications that simply can t tolerate running in a cloud or virtualized environment, either because they are on legacy hardware or the vendor won t support them. Companies with this challenge have traditionally taken a monolithic approach to DR, protecting all systems with the same approach; however, as other models emerge, more and more companies are beginning to segment their recovery approaches either by platform or system criticality. In the future, many enterprises will take a multitiered approach to recovery, potentially using a traditional cold site for mainframe applications, coupled with managed services or cloud recovery for open systems. Figure 5 Adoption, Drivers, And Barriers Of Cloud-Based DR Not interested in any DR in the cloud solutions 13% Already using the public cloud as a recovery site 20% Top barriers to adopting cloudbased DR are status quo and security concerns Interested in using the public cloud as a recovery site 39% Interested in using an IT recovery-as-a-service Planning to use an IT recovery-as-a-service or managed cloud recovery service 21% Do you use the cloud for any piece of your disaster recovery plans today? Already using an IT recovery-as-a-service or managed cloud recovery service 23% or managed cloud recovery service 39% Planning to use the public cloud as a recovery site 27% 87% of survey respondents are interested in, or already using, cloudbased DR solutions today Why are you interested, in or already using, the cloud for disaster recovery? Faster recovery 55% Top drivers of cloud-based DR solutions are faster recovery and lower costs Overall cost savings Easier disaster recovery testing More likely to recover successfully and meet recovery objectives Pay-as-you-go pricing More flexible and shorter-term contracts Base: 75 global IT decision-makers Source: A commissioned study conducted by Forrester Consulting on behalf of IBM, February % 23% 19% 33% 45% Page 5

6 Takeaway: Enterprise IT Managers Should Evaluate Cloud-Based Recovery Solutions In our survey of 75 firms, only 13% indicated that they had no interest in leveraging the externally hosted cloud for disaster recovery. The top reasons for this disinterest were companies being satisfied with their current DR architecture or being concerned about security, compliance, and control issues in the cloud. There is no doubt that the adoption of cloud-based DR is going to continue over the next few years, and the products and services need to be ready to cater to that. When weighing the risks and barriers of security and compliance with the advantages of cost savings, increased recovery, and easier testing, it seems evident that this will continue to trend upward as enterprises around the world continue to implement cloud-based DR. IT managers who have not yet investigated the possibility of sending some of their recovery to the cloud are behind the times; it s time to start planning. Methodology This Technology Adoption Profile was commissioned by IBM. To create this profile, Forrester leveraged its Forrsights Hardware Survey, Q3 2011, and Forrsights Budgets And Priorities Tracker Survey, Q Forrester Consulting supplemented this data with custom survey questions asked of 75 IT decision-makers in the US, the UK, and India who are responsible for planning and purchasing technology and services related to disaster recovery at enterprise organizations with more than 1,000 employees. Survey questions were related to how disaster recovery is provisioned and why there is interest in leveraging the public cloud for disaster recovery. The auxiliary survey was conducted in February For more information on Forrester s data panel and Business Technology Consulting services, visit About Forrester Consulting Forrester Consulting provides independent and objective research-based consulting to help leaders succeed in their organizations. Ranging in scope from a short strategy session to custom projects, Forrester s Consulting services connect you directly with research analysts who apply expert insight to your specific business challenges. For more information, visit , Forrester Research, Inc. All rights reserved. Unauthorized reproduction is strictly prohibited. Information is based on best available resources. Opinions reflect judgment at the time and are subject to change. Forrester, Technographics, Forrester Wave, RoleView, TechRadar, and Total Economic Impact are trademarks of Forrester Research, Inc. All other trademarks are the property of their respective companies. For additional information, go to [1-JYOIUN] Endnotes 1 Source: State Of Enterprise Disaster Recovery Preparedness, Q2 2011, Forrester Research, Inc., May 18, Source: BC/DR Remain Priorities For 2012 But Take A Backseat To Cost-Saving And Efficiency Initiatives, Forrester Research, Inc., October 24, Source: Wake-Up Call: You Aren t Ready For A Disaster, Forrester Research, Inc., February 9, Page 6

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