Innovation in everything from workflow automation and mobility to cloud resources and high-speed networks has continued to increase in pace. As 2022 unfolds, this rate of development is likely to rise even further.
There are some key trends that will shape the next twelve months for organisations across every sector of business. Six of the key ones will be:
1. Hybrid cloud will go mainstream:
Growing numbers of organisations have begun to make use of more than one cloud provider, selecting resources and capabilities that best match the particular requirements of their applications and databases.
During 2022, this hybrid approach to cloud usage will continue to gather pace. This, in turn, will create additional complexity for IT teams and increase workloads for security specialists.
2. An urgent need for better Kubernetes management:
Since its development back in 2014, Kubernetes has grown to become one of the most popular enterprise workload management platforms in use today. While this has helped organisations keep containerised assets under control, it has also created some challenges.
The variety of Kubernetes offerings available, spanning both cloud providers and private infrastructures, continues to increase. At the same time the effort required to deploy a new cluster has declined.
During 2022, there will be a rise in so-called Kubernetes ‘sprawl’ as more and more clusters are put in place. As a result, the need to manage the lifecycle of these clusters in a consistent manner, as well as the ability to consolidate them easily, will become increasingly critical.
3. Usage of vendor-neutral APIs rapidly increase:
The rise of technologies such as containers and Kubernetes has forever changed the way software is packaged and maintained. They also offer unprecedented application portability and have freed developers from vendor lock-in and enabled APIs and microservices to become the new fuel for the digital world.
During the coming year, more developers will adopt open and vendor-neutral APIs so they can create applications in their preferred environments without being locked into a particular vendor ecosystem. While this approach offers great flexibility, it could put organisations at risk of a cloud vendor’s “embrace, extend and extinguish” policy towards open APIs.
4. The rise of API communities:
The promise for organisations that took an Application Programming Interface (API)-first approach to infrastructure design was that those APIs could be reused, thus allowing maximum value to be gained from them.
In reality, this didn’t end up being the case and reuse is actually very low. To address this situation, API communities will be established through which APIs can be offered for sale or rental. Following a model similar to that of an app store, IT teams will be able to advertise their APIs while also sourcing code from elsewhere.
5. Enterprises will become more ‘polyglot’:
Faced with an ongoing shortage of technical staff, increasing numbers of organisations will choose to become more polyglot and make use of multiple programming languages. The rationale is that this will make them more attractive to potential new developers who know they will be able to continue working in the environment of their choice.
Application creation will also continue to be reshaped through increasing usage of low-code and no-code tools. This puts developer capabilities into the hands of people with little or no development experience and reduces the demands on the already stretched IT department.
6. OPA will emerge as a new enterprise standard:
Open Policy Agent (OPA) is an open-source policy engine that enables unified policy enforcement across an organisation’s entire technology stack. In 2021, it enjoyed strong adoption and experienced significant feature maturity.
In 2022, OPA will have a breakout year as IT teams leverage it for more and more use cases. There will also be an increase in new technology solutions that natively integrate with OPA.
OPA will also enable organisations to automatically define and codify their enterprise policies, instead of manually creating and maintaining these policies each time, saving tremendous developer time and resources.
The coming year will be one full of both promises and challenges. By taking time to understand the issues raised by these predictions, organisations can be well placed to take advantage of new opportunities as they arise.