Multicloud is the new normal. And fortunately, this new normal is not just a fluke, it is generating positive results.
New findings show that most organizations benefit from using multiple cloud providers. Multi-cloud adoptions help achieve business goals, such as improving reliability and scalability and increasing overall security and governance. However, nearly all organizations (94%) admitted to having avoidable cloud spend, and skills shortages continue to hinder fully realized multicloud success.
HaschiCorp recently released the 2022 State of Cloud Strategy Survey: Making Multi-Cloud Work. In addition to showcasing the positive results of multi-cloud adoption, the report revealed a trend toward automation frameworks that help operationalize multi-cloud. Below, I’ll explore key takeaways from the report to see what CloudOps and platform teams can learn from current multi-cloud trends.
Multi-Cloud is Achieve business goals
First, the use of public clouds is growing dramatically: the majority of public cloud workloads will likely double over the next two years. To support this influx, more and more organizations are turning to multi-cloud. According to the HashiCorp survey, 60% are already multi-cloud and 21% plan to use multiple clouds within the next year.
The good news is that a multi-cloud strategy seems to work. 90% of respondents said multi-cloud helps their organizations achieve their business goals. This figure is an impressive jump from HashiCorp’s 2021 survey, in which only 53% of organizations said multi-cloud helps them achieve their business goals.
So what exactly are enterprises getting out of adopting multi-cloud? Well, the main business objective of multi-cloud is reliability, at 46%. This is followed by digital transformation (43%), scalability (42%), security and governance (41%) and cost reduction (39%). As we can see, multi-cloud also benefits various domains.
Centralized automation supports multi-cloud
With the rise of multi-cloud, CloudOps is becoming a discipline in its own right. As such, it is common for an organization to set up a Cloud Center of Excellence (CCoE) or dedicated strategic team to manage cloud operations: 86% said they rely on a cloud platform team . Such a team is often tasked with standardizing cloud services, developing cloud best practices, creating operational policies, and related tasks.
To help cloud platform teams, cloud automation is becoming increasingly important. The survey revealed that 99% of them consider automation important to operationalize multi-cloud infrastructure. Multi-cloud automation could help resolve inconsistencies between different cloud workflows. Interviewees also found that it could be applied to provide more flexible infrastructure, improve security and governance, and make better use of cloud resources. Improving security is particularly important here, as 89% said security is a key factor in cloud success.
So how are these automations built? Well, people rarely build cloud automation tools from scratch – only 27% do. It is much more common to use open source or commercial tools for cloud automation. It’s pretty equal across the board, whether these tools are run “as a service” or self-hosted.
Regardless of tooling type, enterprises reap a wide range of benefits from using middleware to manage their multi-cloud operations strategy. 49% see scalability as a benefit. This is followed by infrastructure provisioning (42%), cost optimizations (40%) and more flexible deployment options (39%).
(Almost) Everyone Spends Too Much on Multi-Cloud
Unsurprisingly to some, the study found that 94% of organizations waste money in the cloud. The most cited areas that contribute to cloud overspending and waste are: unused or underutilized resources (66%), over-provisioned resources (59%), lack of necessary skills (47%), and manual containerization ( 37%).
The dilemma of overspending in the cloud requires first thinking about optimizations and reducing idle resources. As I’ve discussed before, some organizations are even considering employing a cloud economist, or cloud chief financial officer, to control rising cloud charges. To help achieve this mission, 43% say consistent, automated tools have enabled or would lead to better use of cloud resources.
Although wasteful spending is ubiquitous, the majority of companies correctly plan their cloud spending. More than half (57%) said their organization’s planned cloud spend in 2021 was in line with their actual cloud spend.
Make the most of multi-cloud
Multi-cloud is increasingly common across all IT divisions, as is middleware to operationalize and standardize logic across multiple clouds. And, widespread commercial success with multi-cloud signals has increased maturity in this area.
Yet multi-cloud is not without its challenges. Skills shortages are the primary factor hindering an organization’s ability to operationalize multicloud. Companies face other challenges, such as siled teams, compliance and risk management, and lack of training in order to fully realize multi-cloud. Standardized operational models, as well as shared workflows and policiesare possible ways to combat these roadblocks.
The HashiCorp study surveyed 1,000 technology practitioners and decision makers around the world. HashiCorp also partnered with Forrester to provide additional analysis of the results. To read the results for yourself, check out the full report here.