New cloud innovations that promise greater speed, security, and resiliency are constantly emerging. With abundant choice at hand in terms of cost and capabilities, organizations do not want to be tied down to a single cloud provider. While hybrid cloud enables businesses to take advantage of economies of scale, multi-cloud allows them to steer clear of vendor lock-in and reap the benefits of cost arbitrage, on-demand scalability, and improved redundancy that reduces risk of service downtime. In effect, a multi-cloud strategy opens up myriad opportunities for businesses to pick and choose the best of what different vendors have to offer.
Hybrid and multi-cloud adoption is expected to skyrocket in the coming years as growing number of businesses get on the digital transformation bandwagon. According to Gartner*, Demand for CMP tools that effectively manage across clouds will grow gradually at a 6.6% CAGR through 2021 as adoption of public and multi-cloud usage increases.
According to IDC**, by the end of 2018, worldwide spending on public cloud services and infrastructure will touch USD 160 billion.
The multi-cloud challenge: A mess or miracle?
Going all-in on multi-cloud is far from easy and organizations often realize that doing it single-handedly is unlikely to yield the desired results. That’s because the environment is complex on all fronts – from ensuring tight integration between solutions from multiple providers to deciding which workloads should go where and juggling various price points, SLAs, contracts, skills, etc. Ensuring application compatibility across multi-cloud environments, maintaining consistency in IT management, and maximizing existing investments in IT resources and tools, are other concerns when dealing with multiple clouds. A multi-cloud strategy, with its multifarious touch points and challenges, can easily spiral out of control, becoming more of an operational, governance and cost headache than a miracle, if it is not approached correctly.
How a Boundary Less Data Center can help rein in multi-cloud challenges
A Boundary Less Data Center (BLDC) represents an innovative, breakthrough platform-centric approach to IT service delivery that is workload-centric, automated, software-defined, and enables high resiliency. For instance, BLDC can deliver a software defined cloud through VMware SDDC solution, with underlying infrastructure provided by AWS. The result: enterprises can leverage a scalable, hybrid IT architecture and the operational expertise of AWS's leading public cloud offered through VMWare Cloud, without losing investments in their traditional enterprise datacenters. Leveraging vSphere, VMware NSX, vSAN and vRealize Suite, enterprises can take advantage of virtualized compute, networking and storage, as well as derive analytics-driven insights from cloud workloads. BLDC presents enterprises with a technology blueprint to run, manage, and secure applications in a hybrid IT environment without the need to purchase custom hardware, refactor/rebuild applications, or modify operating models. Additionally, it simplifies via single pane of glass reporting, capacity management, drives on-going optimization along with chargeback and metering.
Want to ensure a seamless multi-cloud journey? Follow these three best practices
Leveraging a multi-cloud strategy confers many benefits. Businesses can match the right cloud with the right requirement, side-step vendor lock-ins, and enhance disaster recovery and geo presence. This, in turn, translates to lower capital expenditure and improved security. While emerging technologies such as containers and serverless computing make multi-cloud even more attractive for organizations, the fact is it can get very complex, very quickly. Here are three best practices to make your multi-cloud strategy a success:
- Create a clear vision: Assess workloads, decide which workloads make the best candidates for which cloud type, and ensure application readiness to cloud to drive glitch-free migration.
- Focus on cloud analytics capabilities to derive meaningful insights from usage data and optimize cloud utilization and spends.
- Equip the development team to leverage best practices and readymade blue prints and recipes to increase agility and time to market.
The way forward for next-generation enterprises is clear. There is no one size fits all approach when it comes to making multi-cloud work for you. The trick lies in crafting the right strategy aligned to your organization’s unique needs and phase of the multi-cloud journey.
*(Gartner, Market Trends: Multicloud Usage Will Drive Cloud Management Platform Growth, Matthew Cheung et al, 17 October 2017)
** IDC, worldwide spending on public cloud services and infrastructure will touch USD 160 billion.