Cloud adoption was already growing steadily before rapidly accelerating during the pandemic. Nearly 90 percent of organizations now have a multi-cloud strategy, with most using a combination of public and private clouds in a hybrid approach, according to Flexera’s 2022 State of the Cloud study.
While a multi-cloud strategy has undeniable benefits, it also creates unique challenges. Those challenges are driving the increased adoption of cloud management platforms (CMPs) that integrate multiple tools for monitoring, managing, and securing applications and workloads across multiple clouds.
By providing common functionality across disparate clouds with different infrastructure and architectures, CMPs help organizations address three of the biggest multi-cloud challenges — management, security, and cost optimization. Those capabilities have produced double-digit growth in the multi-billion-dollar CMP market.
Here’s a look at three of the key multi-cloud challenges and how they can be resolved with CMP:
One of the main challenges with managing multiple clouds is that you typically deal with multiple cloud providers — each with unique architectures, data structures, management tools, standards, guidelines, and terminology. Studies find that organizations with multi-cloud environments commonly use 20 or more management tools for cloud migration, cost optimization, and infrastructure monitoring. That makes it difficult to stitch together a cohesive picture of the entire cloud environment.
CMPs utilize APIs to create a single-pane-of-glass view of all your cloud instances. Administrators can view the entire cloud environment across all servers from one screen, providing visibility for compute capacity, usage, cost, users, and more. Administrators also have the ability to standardize policies across hybrid clouds, which eliminates the need to write cloud-specific scripts.
Cloud provisioning is so easy that it can result in cloud sprawl and an expanded attack surface with no central oversight of applications and data scattered across multiple locations. Because cloud providers have their own security tools, IT security teams may have to switch among different tools and dashboards to monitor for misconfigurations, malware, and other vulnerabilities. These are some of the reasons respondents to a recent 451 Research report ranked security as the most significant challenge to their multi-cloud operations.
CMPs improve security and regulatory compliance across multiple cloud instances with end-to-end monitoring, reporting, and logging. Each cloud instance provisioned automatically creates a system, database, and application logs that allow admins to analyze and troubleshoot in near real-time. Compatibility with all public cloud platforms helps ensure systems meet compliance mandates.
The cloud represents nearly half of the average company’s technology spend, but the Flexera study indicates that up to a third of the cloud spend is wasted on overprovisioning resources. This is largely due to poor visibility into the multi-cloud environment — lacking a clear picture of their cloud inventory, organizations overprovision resources. That often results in unused or underutilized resources that drive up costs.
Asset discovery features in CMPs help alleviate the need for overprovisioning. A CMP will automatically discover applications, servers, storage, and services residing within both public and private cloud environments and maintain an accurate inventory on an ongoing basis. Additionally, administrators can use the CMP dashboard to track spending and analyze usage patterns to more accurately forecast their provisioning needs.
Call On Rahi
Multi-cloud adoption will continue to accelerate as organizations look to create agile, scalable, resilient, and cost-effective IT infrastructures that support today’s business realities. As they add new cloud infrastructure, apps, and services, organizations must exercise proper oversight to conserve resources, rein in costs and enhance security. By enabling tight integration and comprehensive control of all cloud instances, a CMP can help relieve the complexity of managing a multi-cloud environment. Contact us to learn more.
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