Multi-cloud refers to using multiple cloud computing platforms, either from different providers or different regions, to achieve business objectives. As more organizations evolve their data strategies in 2023, the adoption of multi-cloud data infrastructure is accelerating and becoming the new norm. To keep up with this trend, CIOs are expected to embrace it and ensure their cloud applications are portable regardless of the cloud provider. By doing so, CIOs aim to realize flexibility, security, and agility while simplifying their operations, transforming cloud computing into an undifferentiated commodity that eases application burdens.
The adoption rates of multi-cloud and hybrid cloud strategies are expected to continue rising in the current year. According to the Flexera 2023 State of the Cloud Report, which surveyed 750 cloud decision-makers and users from around the world, 87% of respondents had a multi-cloud strategy in place. Here are some key reasons that are driving CIOs to adopt multi-cloud strategies to achieve their organization’s objectives.
- Improved Resilience and Disaster Recovery
This approach allows organizations to spread their workloads across multiple clouds, thus increasing resilience and reducing the likelihood of downtime. It also prevents organizations from becoming too tied into one particular ecosystem – a situation that can create challenges when cloud service providers change the applications they support or stop supporting particular applications altogether. And it helps to create redundancy that reduces the chance of system errors or downtime from causing a critical failure of business operations.
- Increased Flexibility and Agility
Multi-cloud offers organizations greater flexibility and agility by leveraging various cloud providers and platforms to tailor their IT infrastructure to their specific needs, instead of being restricted to a single provider. This flexibility enables businesses to rapidly adjust to changing business requirements and leverage new technologies as they become available.
Adopting a multi-cloud infrastructure also means moving away from potentially harmful business strategies, such as building applications and processes solely around one cloud platform, such as AWS, Google Cloud, or Microsoft Azure. The rising popularity of containerized applications means that in the event of service level changes or more cost-effective solutions from different providers, applications can be quickly moved to new platforms. Also, as each of these components may be better suited for a particular cloud platform than others, thus, running different components on different cloud platforms can help achieve optimal application performance.
- Cost Savings and Optimization
Adopting a multi-cloud approach can also result in cost savings and spending optimization for organizations. By leveraging different cloud providers and platforms, businesses can select the most cost-effective options for each workload. This not only helps organizations avoid vendor lock-in but also enables them to negotiate better pricing with their providers. For example, businesses can use AWS spot instances to secure compute capacity at an optimal price, but switch loads to Low-Priority VMs on Azure or Preemptible VM Instances on Google Cloud for cost optimization when spot instances become too expensive.
- Improved Security
Multi-cloud can also enhance security by reducing the risk of a single point of failure or security breach. By distributing workloads across multiple clouds, businesses can minimize the impact of a security incident and limit the potential for data loss or exposure. One advantage is the ability to transfer certain workloads to public providers with better security features and move loads between IaaS platforms until services can be restored in the event of brute-force DDoS attacks. With multi-cloud, organizations can run workloads in regions that meet their compliance and security requirements. By storing data in various cloud platforms using multiple cloud services, businesses can ensure data safety and availability in the event of a service outage or failure. Virtual servers in the cloud operate according to instructions and only authorized individuals can access the data.
- Effective Compliance Adherence
Meeting compliance requirements is critical to effective data management, and data privacy and governance regulations are becoming increasingly strict, such as the CCPA and the GDPR. These regulations command that the customer data be stored in specific locations. Multi-cloud enables organizations to meet these requirements without the need to build and manage their own on-premises data centers or lakes.
For CIOs, multi-cloud infrastructure is indispensable for effective cloud computing strategy to meet current needs and plan for future growth.