Adopting an effective cloud strategy for digital transformation success
Digital transformation and the adoption of cloud are intrinsically connected. As such, adopting the right cloud strategy will have a significant impact on an organisation’s digital transformation journey.
According to IDC’s Worldwide Whole Cloud Forecast 2020-2024 report, spending on cloud IT infrastructure is predicted to grow at a five-year CAGR of 9.6%, reaching $105.6 billion in 2024 and will account for 62.8% of total IT infrastructure spending.
Given this accelerating investment on cloud IT infrastructure, it would be well worth looking into what the industry best practice is in order to adopt the appropriate cloud strategy.
Any digital transformation project often requires an effective cloud infrastructure to help enterprises achieve their goals of improving performance and optimising resources. As far as cloud adoption goes, it seems like that the hybrid multi-cloud is emerging as the key infrastructure strategy for organisations because it allows them to deploy resources when they need them, where they are needed.
A hybrid cloud strategy normally includes a mix of private cloud, public cloud and/or on-premises infrastructure. Deployments using this strategy combine the benefits of public cloud such as innovation and speed, with the advantages of private cloud which often include compliance and performance.
Such a strategy utilises the resources of the public cloud without having to compromise the security, predictability, and performance of local infrastructure. On the other hand, a multi-cloud strategy uses multiple cloud platforms to deliver a specific application or service in a single heterogeneous environment.
Combining both will enable organisations to deploy a wide range of applications with a consistent platform running portable workloads, while also ensuring greater flexibility, scalability and efficiency as the organization’s requirements grow and change.
Obviously, the greatest benefit of a hybrid multi-cloud strategy is the ability to choose an optimal solution for each task or workload. Organisations might use on-premise infrastructure for storing sensitive data, for example, and public cloud services for application development or hosting. Others may utilize multiple public cloud vendors to shift workloads from one to another to optimise pricing or demand.
In adopting a hybrid multi-cloud strategy, keep in mind that, while it is beneficial, it could also introduce complications in the transit of sensitive data that some organisations may not be prepared for or have the capabilities to deal with. The key is to have a full grasp of where sensitive data exists to determine which data can be moved to the cloud. Set clear guidelines on how data is collected and moved as well as identify risks associated with this flow.
Compliance requirements will also be a critical issue and need to be carefully addressed. Because a hybrid, multi-cloud environment will also utilise public clouds, it is imperative that organisations factor in the risks associated with multi-tenant environments.
Cost optimisation will also be an important consideration in adopting a hybrid multi-cloud strategy. In multi-cloud environments, the market for third-party cost optimization will be bigger, so it is important for businesses to consider providers who can help escalates savings without compromising performance, while also keeping in mind consistency across multi-cloud infrastructure.
In addition, in migrating to a hybrid, multi-cloud environment, and simplifying the journey, businesses would have a greater chance of success when they look at service providers and system integrators that not only offer the best cost, but also have a proven track record of successful migrations.