Cloud computing has changed the landscape of how software is developed and implemented to production. Multicloud solutions are becoming increasingly popular, as businesses seek to improve efficiency and flexibility. In the quest to advance their digital transformation, no organization wants to be tied down by vendor lock in. On the flip side, if selecting a single cloud provider is hard, choosing multiple cloud providers is equally challenging. Implementing a great multicloud strategy can be a challenge – and requires careful planning and execution.
This blog explains all about multicloud and how can you get started on your journey.
Table of Contents
What is multicloud?
A multicloud solution refers to a set of devices and applications that are distributed across more than one public cloud providers, or networks. These public cloud services in some cases are integrated with on-prem network (or private cloud) and infrastructure as well. It is important to note that multicloud and hybrid cloud are not mutually exclusive.
In other words, multicloud typically refers to running enterprise applications on platform-as-a-service (PaaS) or infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) from multiple cloud service providers. Multicloud architecture is often built on open-source cloud native solutions, like containers that are supported by all public cloud providers.
Multicloud helps organizations save costs by not only doing compare and contrast of the services but by securing the best available rates based on their specific IT needs. Multicloud enables organizations to improve efficiency, flexibility and business continuity by using multiple resources to support their mission-critical applications.
Here is what Ken Fee, Founder and CEO – Business Technology Architects has to say about Multi-cloud architecture – “Multi-cloud architectures have been here for years, and it’s only growing. You’d be hard-pressed to find any large business that doesn’t use multi or hybrid cloud strategies. The risk here is that it comes with new challenges around monitoring, security, and cost optimization. Security standardization is a must, while balancing cost and performance optimized workload distribution are evolving and require constant attention. The way to be successful in choosing the right multi-cloud partners is to find a balance and focus on security, performance, visibility, and business continuity.”
What are the key elements of a hybrid multicloud strategy?
There are five key elements to building a successful multi-cloud strategy: understanding your business needs, identifying where cloud services can help, developing an integration plan, setting up governance and compliance, and managing expectations.
To successfully deploy a multicloud solution, you first need to understand your organization’s current needs. What resources does your business need that cannot be realistically delivered by on-premises resources? Can a subset of these resources be delivered by using cloud services? How do you envision using cloud services in the future?
Next, you need to identify where cloud services can help. This might include tasks such as data storage and retrieval, performance enhancements for mission-critical applications, or meeting compliance requirements. Once you have identified where cloud services can help, it’s important to develop an integration plan. This plan should identify who is responsible for implementing the solution, how it will be integrated with your organization’s existing infrastructure, and who will be responsible for maintaining and scaling the solution.
Setting up governance and compliance can be challenging, but it’s important to do it right. For example, you need to make sure that users have appropriate permissions to access the cloud services they are using, and that data is stored in a secure location. You also need to ensure that your organization has a handle on data retention policies and procedures.
Finally, managing expectations is key when implementing multicloud solutions. Make sure that everyone understands what the new arrangements are – from IT administrators to line-of-business (LOB) employees.
What are the key considerations when implementing a multicloud strategy?
According to one Gartner study, businesses that manage their multi-cloud architecture inadequately will face a net raise of operational costs. So, it it important to have a good solid, executable strategy while implementing multicloud solutions.
A multicloud approach comes with it own challenges. However, when considering how to implement a multicloud solution, remember that there are several elements to take into account. These include:
1. Infrastructure requirements
Whether you are relying on PaaS or IaaS, it it important to take into account your infrastructure. Identify the different types of devices and applications that need to be supported, and evaluating your infrastructure requirements based on this.
Make sure that your organization has the available resources to support multi-cloud environments and devices, specially when it comes to IaaS. This includes ensuring that your networks are scalable and capable of handling higher loads, as well as having enough storage capacity and bandwidth available.
2. Application and device compatibility
Choose the right technologies for your needs. Multicloud solutions can benefit from a variety of cloud storage, networking, and application management technologies, depending on your business needs.
Make sure that all the devices and applications you plan to use with your multicloud solution are compatible with the different cloud technologies you’re using. This includes ensuring that your devices can connect to the internet and access the appropriate software updates and Applications Programming Interfaces (APIs).
3. Data management requirements
Multicloud can often cause difficulty in synchronizing and sharing data. This can lead to decreased productivity and increased costs for businesses that rely on cloud-based applications and services.
You’ll need to consider how you’re going to manage your data in a multicloud environment. This includes considering how you’re going to store and access your data across different clouds, as well as developing policies and procedures for data access.
4. Mantaining and monitoring infrastructure
Make sure that your devices and applications run smoothly on the different clouds you’re using. Configuring, managing, and monitoring multiple platforms can be challenging, and may result in reduced visibility. Proactive maintenance and monitoring can ensure that your environment is running smoothly and that any issues are quickly corrected.
5. Security considerations
Storing and accessing data on multiple clouds introduces complexity. Make sure that your multicloud solution is secure from the perspective of both data and device protection. This includes understanding the security features offered by each cloud technology you’re using, as well as configuring your devices and applications appropriately for multicloud deployments.
6. Fill the skill gaps
As organizations adopt new technology, it can be difficult to find staff with the multicloud skills they need. It is important for organizations to make sure they train staff to learn skills across multiple clouds.
How to learn multicloud?
There is no one-size-fits-all approach to learning multicloud technology. However, several resources are available online that can help you get started. Some great sources of information include online forums, industry publications, events and training programs offered by all major cloud providers.
Another way to learn multicloud would be getting yourself cloud certified. Almost all major cloud vendors provide free training, especially when it comes to entry level certifications. Some of the popular entry level certifications are:
Adopting multicloud is good for organizations to achieve enhanced agility and faster time to market. In order to excel in a multicloud world, individuals need to have the right skillsets, be able to learn quickly, and be able to keep up with constantly evolving technology. This means individuals have all the tools to add business value faster and this creates more high rewarding career options.