In recent years, a growing number of organizations have turned to multiple public cloud providers to run their businesses.
In some cases, the situation arises unintentionally, as separate teams prefer different platforms. Other times, it’s the result of a strategic decision from organizations eager to gain the competitive and economic advantages of multiple clouds. These can include higher flexibility, lower costs, a greater capacity to monetize data, and regulatory compliance.
Yet the journey to multi-cloud adoption can be long and painful. Along the way, many enterprises can face spikes in complexity and cost, not to mention and security concerns.
Unlocking the true potential of a multi-cloud approach—becoming “cloud smart”—requires being intentional and strategic.
The Struggle with Multi-Cloud Complexity
Multi-cloud challenges can take business leaders by surprise. Public cloud “looked really, really good on paper,” said William Brown, Cloud and Infrastructure Architect at ice Norway.
“After the initial burst of excitement, there’s this phase of disillusionment—that things aren’t going as well as had been expected,” said Tom Eck, SVP and Distinguished Engineer at Fiserv.
For Christoph Rode, senior vice president of Cloud Platforms at T-Systems (part of Deutsche Telekom AG), multi-cloud adoption led to challenges on several fronts. “You realize costs are spiraling even if you do cost control,” he said. “I need to control my costs. I need to control security, compliance, and I need help.”
These experiences are not unique. According to a recent survey of nearly 6,000 IT leaders by Vanson Bourne commissioned by VMware, 70% say they struggle with multi-cloud challenges. Few enterprises have reached the tipping point at which the strategic advantages of multi-cloud outweigh its complexities: 70% of companies have not yet achieved an advanced stage on their journey to multi-cloud adoption.
Organizations experiencing these challenges are missing out on key opportunities around multi-cloud revenue, profitability, and data monetization that can deliver competitive advantages. They are also unable to enjoy multi-cloud data sovereignty and data security advantages that keep customers and employees loyal.
The Advantages of Being “Cloud Smart”
There’s a better approach to multi-cloud adoption. One in five organizations surveyed in the report could be considered “cloud smart,” or mature in their approach to multi-cloud. They are taking a planned and strategic approach to digital transformation and multi-cloud implementation.
“The security of your application, the accessibility of your application from various parts of the world, how you utilize these apps, to me, is really what the start of being cloud smart is,” says Joe Van Ert, system architect at Quality Bicycle Products.
These key factors are what separate cloud-smart organizations from those experiencing challenges with multi-cloud adoption:
- Application innovation
- Visibility and cloud spend
- Cloud security
- Data management culture and teams
Regardless of where an enterprise is on the path to cloud adoption, it can adopt a cloud-smart mindset. Organizations that take this approach and draw on the right technology can reduce complexity and mitigate the challenges that come with juggling multiple clouds. Making the most of available cloud platforms allows businesses to maximize revenue and profitability, securely manage data across borders, and monetize the data at their fingertips.
Learn more about becoming a cloud-smart organization.