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Enterprise Scale vs. Agility: What are the Differences?


scaleagility.PNGWhen working with enterprise clients who are considering a hybrid cloud infrastructure, we often find there is a misunderstanding of the terms scalability and agility. Many times, the two are being used to represent the same functions in the organization.

The truth is, enterprise scale and business agility have very different meanings, even though they can relate to each other.

Let’s make sense of these important functions, as they pertain to organizations looking to improve business operations with hybrid cloud.


When we talk about business agility, what we mean is the ability for an organization to respond to changes quickly. This can mean changes in consumer demand for a product, the need to improve an existing product, or the need to adapt with the availability of materials. The changes can be different in every industry. For most of today’s businesses, increasing agility is necessary to keep customers happy, and to bring new products or processes to market before the competition.  

Agility is an important concept for businesses to understand and work toward, because the ways in which businesses can perform with hybrid-based clouds are expanding. At the same time, businesses in the enterprise are finding ways to do them faster, and thus we have an arm’s race to see which organizations can perform the fastest, the most efficiently, and with the most reliability.

This is where scalability comes in.


In the enterprise, the scale of IT resources is determined by performance limits. For example, if the current infrastructure limits the performance of an application by slowing response times or throughput, then the organization may decide to employ additional IT resources to improve performance.

The ability of an organization to add resources to improve performance is scalability.

The faster you can scale your IT resources, the more agile your business can be. The more agile your business can be, the faster it can respond to developer or user needs, the better it can accommodate changing system demands, and the better product or service you offer to customers.

In essence, you cannot improve agility without scalability. And without agility, you cannot position your organization to compete in the new business world where speed and performance dictate who wins.  

Start Improving Scalability and Agility with Hybrid Cloud

HPE Helion Eucalyptus is open source hybrid cloud software for AWS users. By creating a private cloud on your own machine with Eucalyptus FastStart, you can increase ability and scalability across your organization.

Senior Manager, Cloud Online Marketing
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About the Author


I manage the HPE Helion social media and website teams promoting the enterprise cloud solutions at HPE for hybrid, public, and private clouds. I was previously at Dell promoting their Cloud solutions and was the open source community manager for OpenStack and at Rackspace and Citrix Systems. While at Citrix Systems, I founded the Citrix Developer Network, developed global alliance and licensing programs, and even once added audio to the DOS ICA client with assembler. Follow me at @SpectorID

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