Future of Digital Infrastructure

Ensure faster delivery of reliable digital services and experiences

The Future of Digital Infrastructure

Making the right decisions about where to invest in digital infrastructure modernization and integration fundamentally impacts an organization's ability to execute its digital-first business agenda. Enterprise agility and operational effectiveness are largely dependent on the responsiveness, scalability, and resiliency of the digital infrastructure used to enable mission critical applications, data operations, and connectivity demanded by customers, partners, and employees.

Are Your Digital Infrastructure Investments Aligned with Your Business Goals?

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The Future of Digital Infrastructure: Distributed By Design

Enterprises require more robustly interconnected, agile, and well-integrated infrastructure environments. A "distributed by design" approach facilitates greater business flexibility and agility than siloed hybrid or multi-cloud strategies.

A cloud-shaped diagram representing the Future of Digital Infrastructure.

IDC’s Future of Digital Infrastructure framework provides a model for understanding how a successful digital-first strategy is built on critical digital infrastructure investments deployed across dedicated on-premises datacenters, edge locations, and public cloud resources.

Cloud Technologies

Serve as the foundation for platforms and systems used to build and deliver cloud services and enable delivery using a variety of shared public cloud service, managed service, dedicated infrastructure, and software-as-a-service models.

Cloud technologies include modern computing, storage, and networking, as well as software for infrastructure automation and observability; data management and mobility; and security and are built for on-demand scalability, software-defined control, API enabled integration, and usage or consumption-based metering.

Autonomous Operations

Emphasizes the value of software-defined automation based on an infrastructure control plane design and informed by AI/ML-powered analytics and policy-based governance. Autonomous operations enable self-healing, self-driving and self-service infrastructure access, configuration, deployment, and Day 2 operations, along with on-demand workload scaling and end-to-end infrastructure resiliency.

Ubiquitous consumption

Empowers digitally driven businesses to take a holistic approach to assessing and leveraging all available deployment options across digital infrastructure ecosystems. Ubiquitous consumption provides seamless experiences to end users and business units and provides an opportunity for IT to adopt as-a-service consumption and support models as a part of digital infrastructure IT strategy that aligns spending with business outcomes and shifts routine activities such as capacity planning, lifecycle support, infrastructure monitoring, and cost optimization to equipment and software vendors.

IDC’s analysis shows that the average U.S. enterprise has significant opportunities to improve digital business outcomes by:

  • Accelerating cloud native infrastructure adoption
  • Implementing consistent digital infrastructure operating models across on-premises, edge, and public cloud infrastructure
  • Increasing infrastructure automation powered by artificial intelligence and machine learning (AI/ML) analytics

Digital infrastructure resiliency – the ability to seamlessly adapt and insulate infrastructure and the supported business services from disruptions – is critical to overall digital business agility and success. Digital infrastructure resiliency leaders demonstrate significantly higher levels of year-over-year improvement in revenue growth, time to market, and operational efficiency compared to digital infrastructure resiliency latecomers.

IDC’s Digital Infrastructure Resiliency Index is a framework that enterprises can use to assess their own Digital Infrastructure Resiliency Quotient (DRIQ) using a 100-point scale to pinpoint top digital infrastructure investment priorities proven to significantly improve digital business outcomes.

Business leaders must frame their business cases for creating and enabling these digital infrastructure platforms in terms that extend beyond traditional datacenter and cloud budget calculations. And, they must work across the organization to transform operational environments, sourcing, and financial models to align with top business priorities, including:

  • Customer experience and digital engagement
  • Digital business agility and innovation
  • Employee productivity and retention
  • Data-driven business and decision making
  • Business risk reduction and compliance improvement
  • Total cost of operations (TCO) optimization
  • Environmental, social, and governance (ESG) and sustainability initiatives


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Adopting Circular Economy Principles to Achieve IT Sustainability Goals

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Are Your Digital Infrastructure Investments Aligned with Your Business Goals?

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Best Practices: Maximizing the Business Value of Consumption-as-a-Service

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IDC Digital Infrastructure Awards Videos

Best Practices: Autonomous Operations for Digital Infrastructure

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IDC Future of Digital Infrastructure Awards

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Research Programs and Custom Solutions

Future of Digital Infrastructure: Research Programs

IDC’s Future of Digital Infrastructure Agenda offers thought leadership and advice on key challenges organizations face when identifying and addressing digital infrastructure requirements for the digital enterprise.

Future of Digital Infrastructure Core Research programs provide business leaders with the insights and guidance needed to align technology investments with business strategy. Core Research programs include:

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Future of Digital Infrastructure: Custom Solutions

IDC’s Future of Digital Infrastructure research and custom offerings help you position your solutions to solve today’s complex customer challenges.

  • Custom Analytics – Identify opportunities to address customer requirements and challenges by segmenting the market using IDC’s Future of Digital Infrastructure framework
  • Thought Leadership – Amplify your message and become a trusted Future of Digital Infrastructure advisor and solution provider.
  • Business Value – Demonstrate customer and business value of your IT solution.
  • Sales Enablement – Sell more effectively and identify new monetization opportunities in partner ecosystems.

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