As companies accelerate transformation plans, moving to the cloud emerges as an important next step to ensure business objectives can be met. To build resilience and prepare for a post-pandemic recovery, businesses within the Asia Pacific region are focusing on boosting IT infrastructure and allocating investments towards digital capabilities.
Cloud consumption trends
According to the latest IDC report, public cloud services spending in the region is estimated to reach US48.4 Billion by the end of 2021, a 32% increase compared to US36.4 Billion in 2020.
Moreover, research from Boston Consulting Group shows that overall cloud spending in Asia-Pacific will reach US$200 billion by 2024 as companies continue to leverage cloud technologies to support business continuity initiatives and plans to improve cost efficiency.
With the urgent need to meet customer demands, accelerate business growth, achieve operational resiliency, as well as ensure regulatory compliance, many organisations in the region are utilising a multi-cloud approach.
According to the Future of Compute Survey conducted by Rackspace Technology in collaboration with Google Cloud, more than half (51%) of Singapore survey respondents shared that 100% of their applicable infrastructure now resides in the cloud, and 64% said that their compute workloads are supported by multiple cloud technologies including public cloud, colocation, and managed hosting services.
Rise of multi-cloud
Multi-cloud, which describes IT environments that rely on multiple cloud technologies appeals to cloud-savvy organisations because it enables IT teams to deliver tailored cloud services that meet specific business needs on a case-by-case basis. By placing workloads across multiple cloud environments, organisations can optimise spending, minimise financial risk through increased return on investments (ROI) and avoid vendor lock-in.
Moreover, rather than picking just one cloud service provider, a multi-cloud approach presents more choices and enables companies to work with a vendor that provides the most features at a better price point. However, while a multi-cloud environment affords companies greater flexibility, agility and significant cost savings, this cloud deployment model also has the potential to inject greater networking and security complexity.
For organisations looking to start their multi-cloud journey, a strategy and governance program can help ensure that the business can innovate on their terms, keep costs in check, as well as maximise resources and strengthen security.
Here's how organisations can maximise the benefits of a multi-cloud environment:
Find the right cloud and workload match
Taking a more intentional approach to migrating to multi-cloud requires matching the right cloud with the right workload. For example, once data makes it to the public cloud, it is not all that mobile anymore. It can be extremely cost- and time-prohibitive to ship large data sets between clouds.
Many organisations evolve to become multi-cloud users by circumstance, rather than by design, possibly by adopting public cloud early and then adding a private cloud system, or vice versa. As a result, they find they do not have the right combination of cloud solutions that meet their computing requirements.
Ideally, the applications and related data should be located as close as possible to each other in the cloud that best supports the needs of a particular workload. However, this specific cloud might not be the best cloud for a different workload, which means the additional cloud is needed to provide a consistently high-quality experience, or there will be trade-offs.
Leverage a multi-cloud management platform
Each workload should be operated in its best environment. This realisation is a crucial first step for IT leaders to ensure continued optimisation.
To extract optimal benefits from cloud resources, leveraging a multi-cloud management platform, or working with a partner who has one, is a must. By utilising a multi-cloud management platform, companies can ensure that the increased technical complexity of multiple clouds does not result in the duplication of roles from one cloud to the next within the enterprise.
Unified Governance and oversight are key to success and ensuring investments have the intended payoff in terms of delivering choice, cost efficiency and security. However, visibility and control also happen to be the biggest obstacles to making multi-cloud work.
IT leaders must have insight into the value, utilisation, and security of their cloud environments to make the best decisions about workload placement and to offer the right level of cloud choice to the business.
Determine the needs of the business
Just as the technology choices that brought an organisation to its current stage in its cloud journey are unique to that business, so too are the solutions to these challenges.
The difference between mediocre results and spectacular success will be the direct results of leadership’s choices around authentication, governance, and management of their multi-cloud environments as well as their adoption of a multi-cloud management system that accelerates and reward business innovation while limiting risk.
To jumpstart the company's multi-cloud strategy, the following steps offer direction and clarity:
- Identify the business’s top-line goals, such as the need to deliver superior customer experiences, accelerate delivery of products and services or optimise economics, and then see how multi-cloud can help support these goals.
- Create a high-level framework to help guide cloud decisions, such as minimum requirements around security, performance, management, and what services are approved for developing cloud-native applications and where to host them.
- Work with the accounting team to address the financial implications of the various cloud service models and identify the total cost of ownership (TCO), long-term costs and savings while remaining focused on your business goals.
As companies increase the capability to leverage more of their data for analytics and decision-making, the way that business leaders authenticate, manage, and govern their multi-cloud environment will determine how successful it can be in helping the enterprise grow and compete globally. The right management, as companies adopt multi-cloud can help to accelerate innovation faster while minimising risks.