Multi-Cloud configurations characterize today’s information systems. Companies must therefore learn to exploit the heterogeneity of these technologies to perceive the best from each and build an increasingly “tailor-made” Cloud. Managing this complexity becomes an imperative for IT Departments, which must be supported with specific application tools and enhanced with new skills in their role as promoters of the transformation.
What Is Meant By Multi Cloud?
A multi-cloud environment consists of multiple public or private Cloud services provided by different providers. In these environments, the company uses and coordinates services from two or more providers to best meet its economic, technical or functional needs.
The Advantages Of The Multi-Cloud
To understand precisely the meaning and importance of Multi Cloud, it is good to dwell on the benefits and opportunities offered by these solutions to IT Departments. The main advantages sought by companies in the evolution towards environments of this type are the following:
- more excellent continuity of service;
- the greater scalability of the systems;
- the lower risk of lock-in by the Cloud provider;
- optimization of the overall cost of the system;
- obtaining better functionalities to support processes;
- the ability to maintain the most critical workloads internally, bringing only secondary components to the Cloud;
- the possibility of providing services more efficiently in different geographical areas at an international level.
The Multi-Cloud opens up a new maturity phase in adopting the Cloud. The main priority is no longer outsourcing but obtaining specific economic, technical and functional advantages.
The Differences Between Multi-Cloud And Hybrid Cloud
Hybrid Cloud and Multi-Cloud are recurring and often interchangeable terms regarding the evolution and integration of information environments. However, we are talking about two agreed but different strategic approaches. Usually, the migration to the Cloud is done gradually over a medium to long-term period. For this reason, the most common scenario to date leads to Hybrid Cloud configurations.
It is no coincidence that, according to a recent survey by the Cloud Transformation Observatory, 77% of companies use Cloud application services integrated with a set of business applications still on-premises, hosted in their data center or entrusted to a service of traditional outsourced data centers. Considering the adoption of the Hybrid Cloud as consolidated, a further element of evolution is represented by the transition from a Single Cloud reality to a Multi-Cloud reality, based on integrating and coordinating Public Cloud services of two or more providers.
The Cloud would no longer be relegated to a limited and insignificant portion of the corporate application portfolio. Still, it would push more and more toward the company’s core business until now kept inside the on-premises data center. Therefore, the technological path for adopting the Cloud is directly traced: Hybrid and Multi-Cloud are the goals to aim for.
How To Manage Multi Cloud In The Company: A “Multi Challenge” Path
The journey towards the Multi-Cloud of Italian companies is full of challenges, not only technological but also economical and organizational. The ingredients involved are many and not always simple to combine effectively: from the multitude of services available in the Cloud to the company’s historical applications. The most significant obstacles perceived in the evolution of this type of environment are:
- the complex management of security;
- the difficulty of managing and optimizing costs;
- the lack of complete interoperability between the offers of the significant Cloud providers;
- the persistence of legacy systems;
- loss of control and visibility over resources.
These are mainly issues related to managing such heterogeneous and complex environments in a centralized, effective and coherent way. There are four levers for system orchestration:
- Automation, or the centralized and automated management of environments;
- Integration, concerning their interconnection;
- Security, or the continuous control of systems security ;
- Governance is the governance and optimization of performance and costs of the same.
This is a critical issue in making the IT architecture flexible and dynamic to the point of becoming almost transparent for the end user, who will be able to take advantage of technologies that fully meet their needs, regardless of the underlying delivery methods.