Sunday, 19th September 2021

Enterprise multi-cloud: what needs to change in 2021

In this new wave of cloud adoption, we are witnessing a rapid increase in multi-cloud models as a growing number of enterprises seek more choice for their data and workloads. No single cloud model can fit the diverse requirements and workloads across different business offerings. By Michel Robert, CEO of Epsilon.

Enterprises are seeing the benefits of multi-cloud, but the challenge is finding the right skills and tools to make it work for their organisation.

In fact, an IDG survey revealed that 56% of respondents felt that managing multiple cloud platforms requires more internal expertise than what cloud providers would have us believe. A key reason enterprises don’t achieve their expected return on investment (ROI) in cloud is operational complexity. This needs to change.

Enterprise Challenges Across the Cloud

Enterprises are facing a whole range of challenges when it comes to connecting and managing multiple clouds. Here are some of the challenges they need to overcome to get the most out of their cloud strategies in 2021:

· Architecture Gap – Enterprises running on a single cloud are limited to its native construct, which can cause limitations that enterprises are not even aware of. When scaling their businesses, they will find it difficult to connect different cloud services without the right model. If they choose to extend to other clouds, they may struggle to replicate the same architecture and design with the other clouds. They will have to re-work their entire design, due to a lack of common control and data plane.

· Basic Networking Features – When an enterprise chooses a hyperscaler for its cloud services, it will have to manage its own networking and security. Such services often lack visibility into real-time network data and analytics, as well as offering little control in terms of availability and encryption.

· Multi-Cloud Connectivity – Most of the main cloud service providers (CSP) are not interested in making it easy to expand to other cloud providers. Enterprises can take a multi-cloud approach to avoid lock-in and also gain better cost management.

· Complexity and Skills Gap – Each cloud has unique networking capabilities and limitations, which require skills and knowledge specific to the CSP. Not all enterprises possess the ability to deploy and manage these environments.

Enterprise Challenges Within the Cloud

Within the cloud, another set of challenges arise for enterprises:

· Changing Enterprise IT Requirements – Enterprises need the same level of functionality, visibility and control in the cloud as they had with on-premise or their private cloud.

· Lack of Visibility – CSP do not expose the detailed operational visibility that enterprise IT requires.

· Limited Security – End-to-end encryption for data in motion, secure network segmentation, policy-based ingress and egress control, and both corporate and regulatory compliance and governance are all significant challenges for enterprises.

· Manual Process – It is difficult, error prone and resource intensive to manually configure and maintain an enterprise cloud network environment of any significant size.

To overcome these challenges and get the most out of cloud in 2021, enterprises will need to look at service provider partners that can support them with the right expertise and technologies.

An end-to-end multi-cloud service should provide an enterprise with seamless connectivity and optimised data management within and across the clouds such as Amazon Web Services, Google Cloud Platform, Microsoft Azure and Oracle Cloud. It should also provide the tools for efficient business growth with ongoing support and add-ons to the enterprise when required, enabling better scalability as the business reaches new levels of growth.

A Multi-Cloud Future

In 2021, managed service providers servicing the enterprise market will need to make a multi-cloud strategy their priority. It has to make operations simpler so that IT departments can focus on the application and the values that it brings to the customers and its business.

Enterprises will need a purpose-built multi-cloud solution that’s simple to use and offers operational visibility and control with automation. With high-speed, low-latency connectivity, as well as advanced visibility and intelligence into the cloud network performance, they can optimise their cloud operations without adding complexity.

A multi-cloud solution can provide a solid foundation for the future, moving enterprises from basic cloud connectivity to an advanced end-to-end multi-cloud network architecture. By overcoming the common challenges within and across cloud environments, multi-cloud can accelerate enterprise digital transformation in the cloud in 2021 and beyond.

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