Most enterprises are embracing multi-cloud strategies as they accelerate digital transformation. Forrester research from June 2022 shows 60% of surveyed decision-makers were already using multi-cloud, a number expected to rise to 81% over the duration of a year. Most (90%) agreed a multi-cloud strategy enables them to reach their business goals.
Enterprises leverage multiple public clouds as a smarter way to match the right workload to the right service, innovate faster and more nimbly, avoid the dangers of vendor lock-in, reduce risks and get access to a more tailored suite of cloud offerings. Yet as they embrace cutting-edge multi-cloud strategies, companies soon realise that a multi-cloud environment involves some complex trade-offs.
These include inconsistent service levels, potential security and governance gaps, lack of visibility into costs, operational complexity and compatibility, and interoperability challenges. Even so, the benefits of a multi-cloud approach will outweigh the downsides for most businesses. Plus, enterprises can mitigate the risks and maximise the advantages by following smarter practices.
Here are some tips businesses can follow to simplify multi-cloud environments and accelerate time to value:
- Centralise cloud management
Before looking at the technology to manage a multi-cloud infrastructure, a smarter enterprise will structure its IT teams and functions for a multi-cloud world. A knowledgeable, centralised cloud team—for example, a cloud centre of excellence—can lead the multi-cloud strategy and help to cross-skill colleagues to manage the complexities of a multi-cloud setup. It can also set standards and policies that help to bring more order and consistency to a multi-cloud deployment.
- Implement a consistent toolset that allows for centralised management
Each public cloud vendor offers tools to manage and monitor services and processes in its own environment. However, to get a complete view of multi-cloud infrastructure, a business will need to implement third-party monitoring and management tools. Such tools offer a way to monitor and manage policy enforcement, security, service levels and more from a single interface. This, in turn, helps to simplify operations and reduce the operational burden.
- FinOps is essential
As enterprises move into a multi-cloud world, the challenges of controlling cloud spend and optimising ROI grow exponentially. Cutting-edge FinOps practices and tools enable the business to gain complete visibility of spending, curb wastage and ensure better business outcomes. FinOps, short for Financial Operations, offers an operating model for efficient cloud usage. A FinOps framework enables IT and DevOps teams to work with purchasing, finance, and other functions to address cloud costs and consumption across the entire organisation.
- Standardise and containerise
Adopting smarter, cloud-native development approaches pays off in the multi-cloud world. A knowledgeable team will opt for standard protocols and formats for storage, computing, and networking as far as possible. The goal will be to create standards and architectures that are compatible with all major providers. Packaging applications in containers, meanwhile, will simplify migrating workloads between different clouds.
- Automate where possible
In a multi-cloud environment, deploying and orchestrating cloud workloads can become a slow, tedious, and error-prone process. But there are many cutting-edge automation tools that help simplify operations such as managing and provisioning cloud resources, setting up virtual machine clusters, and monitoring availability and performance standards. These tools help reduce human error, accelerate deployments, and reduce security and governance risk.
At Nebula, we have years of experience in helping businesses to simplify cloud operations and accelerate ROI through the implementation of smarter tools and processes. Contact us to learn more about how our knowledgeable team can guide your digital transformation journey.