Multi-Cloud is an approach that leaves many IT leaders scratching their heads in confusion for a number of reasons. Whether the reason is lack of insight into how to leverage multi-cloud or understanding the value of this approach, we know that Multi-Cloud is here to stay. According to Gartner, multi-cloud strategies will jump from 10% in 2015 to more than 70% by 2018.

Once an IT leader buys into the idea that utilizing a multi-cloud approach is in the best interest of their organization, a new stage of confusion tends to emerge.  Often they don’t know how to navigate a multi-cloud strategy and how to properly architect and manage multiple cloud vendors in an organized fashion. The goal isn’t to spread data and applications all over the internet!

 

Three challenges organizations face with Multi-Cloud Storage

  1. Finance Challenges: 
    • Optimizing the cost of storage
    • Hidden (or not so hidden) egress charges
    • The development cost of re-platforming apps to move to the cloud
  2. Integration Challenges
    • Lack of experience/process for integrating multiple clouds
    • Making it work with existing data
    • Making Data Fabric “real” in the public cloud
    • Leveraging existing investments (a la Snapmirror, RecoverPoint)
  3. Technical Operations Challenges
    • Multi-Cloud is hard, and often organizations don’t have the expertise on-hand
    • Managing the complexity utilizing diverse functionality from multiple clouds
    • Huge complexity integrating clouds (especially multiple clouds)
    • Big Data requirements can be tricky to handle

Getting all of the major providers, like AWS, Azure, Google, Oracle and IBM to work together so organizations can form a seamless multi-cloud is highly unlikely, so what’s the solution?

 

Tackling a Multi-Cloud Approach

In tackling a multi-cloud approach, organizations need to start with assessing their existing approach and defining a new strategy that encompasses how they manage the things that are and will always be important, such as compliance, risk, and cost control, and still have a sense of control over the management of their environment.

To address these operational challenges of a multi-cloud reality, IT teams will need the ability to visualize resources and manage performance across all environments. Only then will you enable your organization’s infrastructure to be used as a competitive advantage rather than as a risk.

 

Best practices to take into consideration before implementing a multi-cloud strategy:

  • Proactively monitor cloud and infrastructure applications
  • Align IT resources with business demands
  • Identify infrastructure needs to improve application performance
  • Look into both on-premise and public cloud costs to make informed decisions
  • Research hybrid and multi-cloud infrastructure and services you may not be familiar with
  • Prioritize automation to make migration less painful
  • Identify regulatory compliance issues before migrating

 

All of this is much easier said than done, so if you’re struggling to implement or manage a multi-cloud environment, we recommend leveraging a third-party to assist with the evaluation, architecting, planning, and execution of cloud migrations, and possibly even managing the new environments. Through overcoming these challenges, you can ensure a successful implementation and know that your organization is on track for leveraging the benefits of multi-cloud.