By Prangya Pandab - November 13, 2020 3 Mins Read
Even though cloud computing is at the forefront of digital transformation, it’s a tough task maintaining the balance when it comes to cloud flexibility and choice.
There is a question plaguing business leaders for some time now when it comes to cloud flexibility and choice. What is the limit, and how to decide how much is too much? This year has seen a heightened acceleration of workload migrations to cloud and application modernization.
Having a wide array of choices is a privilege, but with cloud computing, teams must trade-off portability with tight integration. Focusing too much on portability can waste time, money, and personnel resources, with needless abstraction layers and inefficient use of cloud resources.
Enterprises are gradually moving to multi cloud or hybrid cloud solutions to deploy applications, so they can avoid getting locked into the vendor cloud ecosystem.
Public cloud vendors have come up with this hybrid/multi P cloud management solution to lure customers in, claiming this gives back the customer’s freedom and choice.
The reality is it can work only to a certain extent. These solutions are mostly targeted at infrastructure management, not application design and operation, so many enterprise processes are left out.
Even though a multi-cloud strategy has many advantages, it is rare and difficult to justify. It unquestionably adds an extra layer of management complexity, mainly when multi-cloud adoption develops in an improvised manner rather than being planned from the ground up.
Running part of an application in one cloud and part in another is exceptionally complicated and ineffective. The lowest common denominator approach to the application may not exploit a cloud provider’s full potential, and businesses will end up having to determine the trade-off between portability and full functionality for particular workloads. The result across multiple workloads is probably a multi-cloud strategy.
However, it’s essential to differentiate between a multi-cloud scenario and a company that uses more than one cloud vendor for specific purposes and teams.
Not all clouds are created equal, and they have their inherent strengths and weaknesses. Some key differences include areas of specialization, licensing costs, and feature sets. All the cloud providers have distinct approaches to prepayment plans, and billing and availability of cloud services vary from region to region.
The pandemic has exposed weaknesses that were previously cast aside. It had revealed a lot of holes that, when the economy was strong, and the money was rolling in, went unnoticed. It has all changed now.
Given how dependent business operations are currently on cloud computing, optimizing spending and the need for a well-informed strategy have increased in importance.
Down the road, dealing with cloud flexibility and choice complexities will help businesses over the long term.
Even a mundane task as taking stock of everything going on in the cloud and gaining deep visibility will be a big step in the right direction for many.
Most people enjoy the illusion of flexibility. But to attain the most effective level of flexibility is not an easy task.
The good news is that it’s achievable, and the tools and strategies to do so, are out there.
Prangya Pandab is an Associate Editor with OnDot Media. She is a seasoned journalist with almost seven years of experience in the business news sector. Before joining ODM, she was a journalist with CNBC-TV18 for four years. She also had a brief stint with an infrastructure finance company working for their communications and branding vertical.
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