Sunday, 21st July 2019
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Survey reveals cloud priorities

Densify has published the findings of a global enterprise cloud survey of IT professionals.

The survey found that the top priorities for most organisations, when it comes to deploying workloads in the cloud, is all about the applications. They are focused on how to ensure applications perform well, how to keep the environments secure, and how to make sure they accomplish these goals within budget. With 55% of the respondents coming from enterprises with over 1,000 employees, these global organisations have concerns over how to ensure apps function well in the cloud. 66% of the organisations are running multi-cloud environments, with the clear majority winner being AWS (70% usage), followed by Azure (57% usage) and Google Cloud Platform at (31% usage). On-prem private cloud users were at 37%.

Container technology is rapidly being adopted to run applications and microservices, with 44% of the respondents already running containers, and another 24% looking into containers. Six months ago, when Densify conducted the last market survey, the percentage of people already running containers was at 19%, showing a strong growth in container adoption in just the last half year. As for which container platforms they run on, the top technology is from AWS with Amazon Elastic Container Service (ECS) and Amazon Elastic Container Services for Kubernetes (EKS), with 56% of the audience using one of these two. However, Kubernetes in general is the most popular being used on AWS, Azure, Google and IBM Cloud.

While enterprises have fully embraced and adopted the cloud and containers, there are some issues in the way people adopt the cloud, that can introduce risk to their businesses. A surprisingly large number of participants (40%) shared that they are not certain or up to speed with the latest cloud technologies from the cloud providers, or how to leverage them for their own success. When asked about how they decide and select the optimal cloud resources to run their applications, 55% reported “best guess” and “tribal knowledge” as their main strategy.

Summary of Key Findings:

  • Highest priorities are 1) app performance, 2) security and 3) efficiency in how they buy resources to control spend - in that order
  • 66% run multi-cloud environments, and not dedicated to one specific type of cloud
  • 40% can’t keep up and are not up to speed with cloud provider technologies
  • 55% admit to guessing or using tribal knowledge to select workloads for their applications
  • 45% are over budget and spending more than they should
  • 5% spend more than $1 million per month in the cloud, with about 20% spending more than $100k per month
  • 55% of respondents use Infrastructure as code (IaC) tools to automate the process of managing and provisioning cloud resources, such as Terraform, Amazon CloudFormation, and Azure Resource Manager. The same 55% don’t use any optimisation mechanisms to fine tune their workloads, which can drive increased application risk and overspending
  • 80% admit to needing help with their cloud and container resource management
  • On Containers:

o Container adoption is on the rise from 19% to 44% adoption in the last 6 months

o Managed Kubernetes services (e.g. Amazon’s EKS, Azure’s AKS, Google’s GKE) are the winning platforms (66%) when it comes to container management and orchestration, followed by Amazon Elastic Container Services (ECS).

o More than 55% are using best guess or tribal knowledge to specify container CPU and memory Request and Limit values, which is a major issue for running containers successfully

The cloud is really complex, with hundreds of services from each cloud vendor, making the selection of the right services for business super difficult,” said Yama Habibzai, CMO, Densify. “It really is humanly impossible to align the workload and application demands to the right cloud resources, without automation and analysis.”

A primary objective of these enterprises is to control their spend with cloud, with this issue being their third most important objective based on the survey results. But the data shows that 45% of the audience indicated that they are spending more than they have budgeted, with 20% spending more than $1.2 million per year. Furthermore, 55% of the audience are using manual efforts to select their workloads, guessing on their selection, which directly drives up their cloud risk and spend.

When asked if automating the optimal cloud/container resource selection could help them with achieving their objectives, 80% responded favourably, that it can help them in reducing application risk, and driving down their cloud spend.

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