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Why hybrid cloud data protection is so crucial

This week's roundup of analyst musings includes discussions about the importance of hybrid cloud data protection and whether it's beneficial to strike a work-life balance.

John Oltsik, an analyst with Enterprise Strategy Group in Milford, Mass., recapped a presentation given by his colleague, Doug Cahill, at last week's RSA Conference. The topic: hybrid cloud data protection -- and, more specifically, the security challenges associated with keeping data secure at a time when workloads are being shipped among multiple providers.

"Cloud security remains inconsistent, as organizations don't have the right tools or processes to monitor activities or keep up with DevOps," Oltsik said. As more workloads move to the cloud, the more serious these security issues become.

Fortunately, there are steps enterprises can take to shore up their hybrid cloud data protection strategies. Among the most important: merging security and DevOps. Oltsik conceded eliminating the operational barriers between these two departments is challenging, but he said ESG research has found 15% of organizations have already made significant moves to integrate the two groups.

Enterprises are also tackling security by creating a new position, cloud security architect, whose chief responsibility is to oversee the transmission of traffic to cloud suppliers.

Read what else Oltsik had to say about Cahill's presentation.

Striking the right balance between work and life

Is there an optimum balance between work and life? That's the question Ethan Banks posed in a blog posted last week on Packet Pushers. Banks said he's always believed it's not worth sacrificing your personal life just to satisfy career goals. That said, there are exceptions, especially during times when a critical upgrade is happening at work, or when you're studying for a certification exam.

That's when you'll have to dig a little bit deeper to accomplish the goals that need to be met.

"I'm not here to tell you it's worth destroying your marriage to become a CCIE [Cisco Certified Internetwork Expert] -- which some people have done," Banks wrote. "I am saying that in order to get hard things done, your life will have temporary imbalances if those hard things are truly important to you."

So, is balance really just an excuse some use to justify their reluctance to spend more time in the office?

See what Banks had to say about that question and his other thoughts about obtaining a good balance between your job and your personal life.

The essence of 'how' and why it's important to networking customers

If vendors want to keep their networking customers happy, they need to explain how their products work and not just market their wares as something that will help meet a company's business goals.

That's because too many companies have been burned by broken promises, said Gartner analyst Hank Barnes. But explaining the how isn't necessarily easy. And vendors are concerned their customers may not be able to understand all the distinctions of what makes their products tick.

It's important for vendors to shed light on how their products operate, but to do that, timing is critical, Barnes said.

"As buyers get more and more interested, they'll grant you more and more attention," he said in his advice to vendors. "And most of that attention will be focused on really understanding if, and how, they can be successful with your products and services. That is the time complete, direct, and clear information is critical."

Once that occurs, vendors have one other matter to satisfy: They have to give buyers a reason to believe. But that's not possible, Barnes said, unless perspective customers understand the basics of how a particular product or service works.

Find out what else Barnes had to say about why vendors need to communicate with their customers.

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