What is multi-cloud?
In today's fast-paced, digitally-driven economy, government organizations, financial services institutions, and commercial enterprises require computing platforms that are fast, flexible, agile, and secure. As these public and private sector entities migrate their data to public, private, or hybrid cloud architectures, many find that going "all in" with a single cloud service provider carries too much risk and limits their options going forward.
Multi-cloud environments may happen by design, such as when new applications are developed and deployed, with a goal of avoiding vendor lock-in or to support microservices architectures. Other multi-cloud deployments occur naturally, as new applications are developed, IT leadership personnel changes, or mandates like business continuity and recovery evolve.
How to implement multi-cloud strategies
Multi-cloud strategies are all about running your business applications on cloud platforms from more than one cloud services provider. There are many cloud service providers, including "megavendor" offerings like Google, Microsoft Azure, VMWare, and Amazon Web Services (AWS). This environment may consist of private cloud architecture, public cloud, or a hybrid of the two for production and non-production purposes like development, testing, and backup.
81% of respondents to a 2019 Gartner survey1 reported they run their data on two or more cloud vendor platforms. The analyst firm predicted that by the end of 2021, 75% of organizations will run multiple public cloud services2 from two or more providers. Sometimes the decision to adopt certain platforms is influenced by the preferences, experiences, and skills of a company's IT staff. In other cases, vendor selection is influenced by consulting firms, systems integrators, or business application developers.
Why adopt a multi-cloud business strategy?
A multi-cloud strategy empowers companies to choose the best available cloud environment for their business-critical applications and platforms. Some cloud services are ideally suited to support transactional data processing demands for internal users or machine learning algorithms. Other clouds better serve as development environments for microservices platforms, or to host and transfer unstructured content like web pages, document repositories, or large media files.
When expertly delivered, multi-cloud methodologies help companies to meet regulatory compliance requirements, and centrally design, deploy, and manage internal and public-facing data across multiple clouds.
What is multi-cloud management?
Every cloud vendor has its own set of monitoring and reporting tools for performance, security, resource utilization, and related costs. Multi-cloud management provides IT professionals with better tools for:
- Server provisioning
- Data migration
- Security monitoring
- Process automation
- Backup and disaster recovery
- Multi-cloud orchestration
- Continuous development and deployment
- Cost monitoring
Some cloud platform vendors have increased the flexibility and interoperability of their cloud platforms to adapt to the increased popularity of multi-cloud operations. Yet, they are still motivated to capture as much cloud market share and customer share of wallet as possible in the ultra-competitive cloud space.
Why adopt multi-cloud management?
Whether you are planning to add a second cloud platform, or if you already have several running in your enterprise, there are many benefits to acquiring and implementing a multi-cloud management system. There are cost savings to be had, efficiencies to be realized, and opportunities to accelerate your digital transformation efforts.
A single multi-cloud dashboard management system can save your organization up to 30%3 on cloud costs. You can better manage your ongoing licensing and maintenance requirements, and better plan for storage and architecture for Disaster Recovery and High Availability. For organizations in highly regulated industries like financial services and government, reports from multi-cloud management systems can help your business to demonstrate compliance in areas like data security and availability.
A future-proof cloud strategy
Organizations across industries have found that no single cloud platform can (or should) meet all of their application, content, data storage, delivery, and processing needs. By contracting services and solutions from a vendor-agnostic managed services provider like Unisys, you can improve the security posture, performance, and scalability of your cloud environment.
Your application designers, developers, testers, architects, administrators, and user communities may have preferred cloud environments for their systems and data. Don't compromise on performance or manageability trying to satisfy the wants and needs of these various groups.
Unisys has a wealth of expertise in operating and optimizing multi-cloud environments for commercial, financial, and government organizations. Our CloudForte solution helps our customers to deploy cloud resources, migrate data between production and non-production cloud instances, and seamlessly manage multiple vendor platforms. A recent Unisys Cloud Success Barometer4 report found that organizations that worked with a third party to help with cloud transition were 27% more likely to succeed compared to those that manage the process solely in-house.
LinkedIn post: Are you struggling to understand the benefits and opportunities of multi-cloud data environment for your business-critical applications and data? Unisys has you covered.
Twitter post: Most organizations are no longer running one cloud or another, they are running a few or even several. Unisys CloudFront Multi-cloud management FTW.
1 Why Organizations Choose a Multi-cloud Strategy - Smarter With Gartner
2 Gartner IT Automation Predictions
3 Unisys Blogs and Podcasts | Hybrid and Multi-Cloud Reality Check
4 1576093996586-Report_UnisysCloudSuccessBarometer.pdf (clearvoice-media.s3.amazonaws.com)