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Government Agencies Continue Their Shift to Hybrid IT, But Few Will Go All In

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Connecting state and local government leaders

Security concerns, lacking skills, budget constraints and legacy systems all impose barriers to a complete migration to the cloud.

Most government agencies have migrated some IT infrastructure to the cloud while keeping critical services on site—moving away from an on-premises-only mentality, according to a SolarWinds report released Tuesday.

Of the North American public sector IT professionals surveyed by the Austin, Texas-based software company, 89 percent said their agency has adopted cloud technologies, and 41 percent estimated at least half their infrastructure would be migrated within three to five years.

Still, 62 percent felt it was unlikely their IT infrastructure would ever be completely migrated to the cloud, according to “IT Trends Report 2016.”

(SolarWinds)

“The resulting dynamic—one set of critical on-premises services connected with another set of services in the cloud—is hybrid IT,” Joel Dolisy, SolarWinds CIO, said in the announcement. “And at the center of this evolution is the IT professional who needs to ensure always-on performance of applications, devices, networks and systems—regardless of location.”

IT professionals are left to see to cloud efficiency while securing critical systems, apps and data. Hybrid IT reduces costs, makes for more agile infrastructure and reduces the need for daily systems management.

But 74 percent of respondents worried about maintaining the security of hybrid environments while burdened by legacy systems and tight budgets. And 30 percent said they lacked the skills to manage hybrid IT.

(SolarWinds)

Among the desired skills: monitoring tools and metrics; app migration; service-oriented, distributed architectures; and automation/vendor management.

Aside from establishing an end-user focus and applying monitoring as a discipline, the report recommends developing technical skills and expertise among IT personnel:

Today’s IT professionals need to reach across traditional roles and become polymaths in order to be successful in the hybrid IT world as they pivot across multiple domains. The most important skills and knowledge IT professionals need to develop or improve to successfully manage hybrid IT environments are service-oriented architectures, automation, vendor management, application migration, distributed architectures, API and hybrid IT monitoring and management tools and metrics.

“They need to be empowered with the support to gain the skills and tools required to properly manage hybrid IT environments, which in turn will allow government to truly unlock the potential of the cloud,” Dolisy said.

Dave Nyczepir is a News Editor at Government Executive’s Route Fifty.

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