“Governments and enterprises will take a step back to be “Cloud Smart”, meaning they will evaluate which workloads belong in which cloud, whether private or public, balancing cloud adoption with their unique goals and desired business outcomes,” says Chip George, VP of US Public Sector Sales, Nutanix, in an exclusive interview with EnterpriseTalk.
ET Bureau: With many governments and enterprises rushing towards cloud adoption in the wake of the pandemic, what initial challenges can they face?
Chip George: As governments and enterprises alike look to accelerate cloud adoption, those that currently run applications in traditional on-prem environments face a similar challenge: migrating apps to the cloud that were not built for it.
Restructuring applications to make them more suitable for the cloud can slow down cloud adoption, sometimes by months or years.
Another challenge is cloud sprawl, which often results in the rapid proliferation of cloud resources that can ultimately be more complex and more costly than a well-architected hybrid cloud.
Staffing can also be a challenge. A recent McKinsey report highlighted that addressing the skills gap is critical for governments and traditional enterprises wanting to adopt public clouds. So, IT teams with a forward-looking mindset need to ensure they have a viable path and appropriate tools to migrate their on-premises applications to the cloud in a fast, simple, and cost-effective manner to truly benefit from the cloud.
ET Bureau: How can enterprises seamlessly adapt and embrace hybrid cloud models while keeping their security posture intact?
Chip George: In a public cloud world, security is a shared responsibility between the user and the cloud provider. By adopting cloud-friendly practices, such as automated detection and remediation of security vulnerabilities, enterprises can strengthen their security posture.
Organizations should adopt a Zero-Trust approach to security一this approach assumes any network, application, server or user could be compromised and therefore, organizations should design their security protocols around that assumption. Additionally, it is crucial for organizations to invest in solutions with a hardened software platform and then build on that foundation to improve multi-cloud security posture with built-in policies to help prevent and detect security threats. A unified security platform with governance policies that work across on-premises as well as public cloud environments also helps with detecting and remediating security risks before they lead to a data breach.
ET Bureau: What steps do you recommend for CIOs to optimize their cloud budget?
Chip George: Keeping cloud sprawl under control is a key budget challenge for organizations that operate within the public cloud. Cloud teams can quickly find their usage growing out of hand without guardrails in place. Tools that help organizations detect and eliminate wasted cloud resources, make recommendations on how to optimize purchase plans, and implement automation playbooks that clean up unwanted cloud sprawl can help control spending.
Real-time reporting on how various teams and business units are using cloud resources with budget alerts and deployment policies can act as guardrails and help control cloud spend. Every organization demands transparency and accountability, so cloud teams are implementing tools to gain the insights they need to make data-driven decisions on optimization, cost and resources.
ET Bureau: What trends do you think the enterprises’ will witness with respect to hybrid cloud environments in the foreseeable future?
Chip George: With the continued rapid adoption of hyper-converged Infrastructure (HCI) software as a seamless bridge between datacenters and public clouds, C-suite executives can expect to witness historically regulated industries accelerate their adoption of hybrid and multi-cloud.
Industry-leading analysts predict that over 75% of mid-size and large organizations will have adopted a multi-cloud and/or a hybrid cloud strategy by the end of this year. The next wave of technology disruption–in the form of cloud-based AI/ML services, IoT and edge computing–will also continue to be a key hybrid and multi-cloud driver.
Governments and enterprises will take a step back to be “Cloud Smart,” meaning they will evaluate which workloads belong in which cloud, whether private or public, balancing cloud adoption with their unique goals and desired business outcomes.
Additionally, automation playbooks and unified IT operations and management tooling will ease the staff up skilling requirements. While datacenter evacuations may trigger public cloud initiatives in some organizations, the ability to use the cloud for elastic disaster recovery, deliver bursting scale and accelerate application development lifecycles will be key use cases for hybrid cloud.
Most of all, multi-cloud will no longer be happenstance but instead a strategic move by organizations looking to avoid vendor lock-ins and run their applications at any scale, in any cloud, anywhere.