As the cloud grows in maturity and service richness, more businesses are considering the multi-cloud. Using multiple cloud vendors allows the business to use the most appropriate vendor for each system. It also brings flexibility, reducing the risk of vendor lock-in, and agility by being able to rapidly ramp resources up and down.
It’s not all plain sailing, however. Multi-cloud involves a level of complexity in architecture, skills and processes. Cloud vendors didn’t begin by agreeing standards with one another, so there are compatibility issues too. Here we take a brief look at some of the issues to consider when moving from hybrid cloud (on-premises and one cloud vendor) to multi-cloud.
The first area to consider is not technical but human. Managing multi-cloud requires internal expertise with each of the vendors’ environments. This will require either training or hiring. Additionally, implementation will need collaboration between internal teams such as application development, security and operations.
There is a huge rivalry between cloud vendors such as Microsoft, Amazon and Google. Each vendor has built their technology to be better but different, resulting in differences in tools and APIs. Also, there are no standards for naming and classification, making communication more difficult between teams.
In a single-vendor set-up, the CIO would normally be able to see a helicopter view of the cloud implementation and how it is performing. Here too there will be no out-of-the-box solution. The development team will need to construct internal reporting and dashboards using APIs.
The cloud is not just about servers and storage. VoIP is also a cloud service. Companies who are still using business VoIP should consider moving their phone system into the cloud for flexibility and cost reasons. As a start point the CIO should contact a wholesale VoIP provider to get more information. Or they could contact an IT Support Cheltenham company for any technical assistance needed including computer and internet security at sites such as https://reformit.co.uk/ provide IT Support in Cheltenham.
Managing security across a multi-cloud environment becomes more complex. Even a single-vendor public cloud has security risks, as reported by the BBC recently. Multi-cloud means risk management with each vendor and the cross-cloud traffic.
For CIOs considering multi-cloud, the first step is to articulate why this will benefit the business. This is a necessity to gain the backing of the leadership team. The backing of the technical staff runs a close second, however. To solve the technical complexity, the CIO will have to lead those skilled people along the journey.