If you think multi-cloud is not gaining traction among organizations, consider this: A staggering 92% of enterprises have a multi-cloud strategy in place, with over 82% taking a hybrid approach, combining the use of both public and private clouds as per data:
There are multiple reasons adoption of multi-cloud solutions is on the rise. These include lowered costs, improved agility, access to diverse cloud features, reduced chances of vendor lock-in, business continuity, and increased flexibility to select APIs, to name a few. That said, there are numerous challenges that a multi-cloud approach can bring to the table. In this blog, we will look at the top-3 challenges and relevant solutions.
Challenge 1: It demands a steep learning curve to understand the different cloud environments and capabilities.
Every cloud platform deployment comes with its own set of architecture, tools, processes, and approaches. Plus, they all have their own set of guidelines and best practices to consider when deploying and managing it.
Naturally, the learning curve for each will differ--an area where your operations team might need to shoulder extra work. Your team will need to understand the various integrations and architectural considerations at play to keep up with organizational innovation. Finally, they may need to multi-task and acquire multiple skill-sets in a compressed time frame, making multi-cloud deployments incredibly challenging.
Proposed Solution: Create a holistic cloud operations strategy when developing your application architecture.
To ensure that all your cloud platforms work like a well-oiled machine, you will need to develop a 360-degree cloud operations strategy--one that encapsulates the needs and requirements of all the platforms together in complete sync. To do this, you'll need to factor in key elements such as feature parities, service availability across locations as Middleware's multi-cloud multi-region tool provides, and understand how to integrate the varied application components. This will ensure that your architectural guidelines are on-point and pave the way for a seamless, hassle-free deployment.
Challenge 2: Most organizations struggle with foggy access to the multi-cloud's state of 'security.'
One of the biggest challenges of a multi-cloud approach is one that's faced by the Security teams. Why? Because to ensure complete security, your team may constantly need to juggle between consoles and dashboards across the different platforms in question. Needless to say, their work will be cut out for them.
While the vendor you choose will be responsible for platform-layer security, you will still need to invest in the right controls to secure the application as well as your sensitive data while preventing instances of misconfiguration.
Proposed Solution: Build a rock-solid data security strategy.
If you think you can get complete security visibility into diverse platforms as your cloud footprint grows with a single tool, you're in for a surprise. The native tools may only be able to provide siloed visibility for their own respective workloads and platforms. To tackle security, privacy, and compliance concerns, your security team should be trained the right way. They should be able to:
Your security team should be able to piece the puzzle together for your multi-cloud deployments, keeping in mind the factors mentioned above, and prioritize security needs as needed.
Challenge 3: Enterprises struggle with getting a handle on the growing cloud spending.
As per recent research, it has been seen that organizations are struggling to forecast their fast-growing cloud costs accurately, with participants claiming that their public cloud spend was over budget by an average of 24%:
In other words, cost optimization is an uphill task--but a raging priority for organizations:
The research also indicates that wasted cloud spending is a significant issue, with respondents estimating that their organizations end up wasting 30% of cloud spend:
Proposed Solution: To optimize cloud spend, look for a third-party tool that specializes in native cost-optimization functionality.
In addition to getting your hands on the right tool, here are some best practices to follow to ensure end-to-end cost optimization:
Multi-cloud deployments are becoming the norm. In other words, there's no doubt that it'll become the future of cloud computing. Understandably so, multi-cloud deployments offer a host of business advantages and benefits. However, as we saw above, they are not without challenges. To make the most out of your cloud deployment, you need to keep the following best practices in mind and move ahead with informed precision:
Invest in training your team so that they can adjust to the steep learning curve that comes with different cloud environments and capabilities.
Build a rock-solid data security strategy to get access to your multi-cloud's state of security.
To cater to the growing cloud spending, ensure that your team is constantly tracking costs from start to finish.
One final piece of advice: The common thread that binds all the challenges and solutions posed above is 'human effort.' While you will need the help of the right set of tools and technologies in place to drive cloud performance, you should think about augmenting your cloud efforts with a 'human touch' (pun not intended).