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IT server estate plans shift as SMEs move towards hybrid working

Image: Adobe Stock / Connect world

New research from ServerChoice has suggested that many small and medium enterprises (SMEs) are moving to hybrid working, causing a dramatic change in how they run their IT server estates.

The Covid-19 pandemic has drastically changed the way we live and work, and as companies are looking to adapt to a post-pandemic world, research from ServerChoice has found that 42% of SMEs consulted are reconsidering their current office set ups as hybrid working becomes more prevalent.

Most are looking to downsize, with new offices being on average 38% smaller than previous offices – while 7% of those surveyed plan to have no physical presence at all.

This change in office space has led some to reconsider their current IT strategies, with a view to moving from on-premises server infrastructure to colocation facilities or public and private cloud.

72% of those surveyed showed a preference for private cloud, followed by 19% looking to colocation, meaning existing servers can be preserved. Bringing up the rear was public cloud, with only 9% moving in this direction.

With some SME business leaders fearing that existing IT infrastructure could slow down their move, the research revealed that top concerns include; the cost of moving servers (38%); downtime caused by the move (33%) and the possibility of breakages during the move (18%).

Adam Bradshaw, Commercial Director at ServerChoice, commented, “SMEs are undergoing a rapid shift in working patterns – with four in 10 of these businesses moving offices. This has become a driver for businesses to relook at their IT server estate and our research found that SMEs are using the office move as an opportunity to shift IT servers off-premises.

“SMEs remain unconvinced by public cloud, with colocation found to be twice as popular as public cloud. This is unsurprising as perfectly good IT hardware does not need to be replaced with colocation. It is a solution that not only maximises the potential of existing hardware but provides a more secure, and often more reliable, foundation for a business’ core infrastructure.

“As SMEs start to plan for the future, they should look to find the solution that best fits their planned ways of working. An office move is an opportunity to relook at IT infrastructure and the cost of moving IT equipment shouldn’t be a blocker to finding the best solution for a business.”

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