The vast majority of IT organizations live in a multicloud world, striving to optimize for agile business while mitigating the risk of single-vendor dependence. Yet distributing workloads across a diverse landscape can create complexity and transparency challenges that beg for modern solutions.
The allure of a multicloud landscape shows no signs of abating. This approach maps specific workloads to specific private or public cloud environments, based on individual strengths and what’s perceived to work optimally for a particular business need. According to Flexera’s “Cloud Computing Trends: 2021 State of the Cloud Report,” 92% of enterprises are moving forward with a multicloud strategy and 82% are embracing hybrid cloud, which makes for a diverse and distributed landscape. Respondents to the Flexera survey reported using, on average, 2.6 public and 2.7 private clouds as part of this complex IT estate.
IDC went as far as to dub 2021 the year of multicloud. Based on its research, IDC estimates that 90% of worldwide enterprises are relying on a mix of on-premises, dedicated private clouds, multiple public clouds, and legacy platforms to meet their business needs.
Hybrid and multicloud architecture is central to increased agility and cost flexibility, but it raises considerable challenges for organizations, especially for data-first modernization. Many organizations are insufficiently prepared to execute cloud road maps, due to inadequate migration resources and management complexities, including transparency into data and workloads and the lack of sufficient cross-platform integration. One example: It’s estimated that organizations waste 30% of cloud spend due to poor visibility, the Flexera research found.
Having significant gaps in the ever-expanding IT skills portfolio also feeds complexity. “As an organization, you have to be multilingual — you have to be able to speak Kubernetes, AWS, VMware, Azure, and GCP, and the list goes on from there,” says Ron Irvine, senior global director, HPE GreenLake Management Services. “That’s not an easy task.”
Beyond having to staff experts across a host of competency areas, multicloud can encourage IT fiefdoms, which becomes problematic for operating as a synergistic environment, especially to fuel data-driven business and address critical issues such as security. For example, setting up security protocols in one cloud might not correlate directly with what’s required for another platform, opening up risks and unnecessary exposure. At the same time, as organizations move away from centralized IT purchasing to empowering lines of business to initiate technology decisions, it increases the likelihood that multicloud will manifest as a fractured IT strategy — complete with data silos — as opposed to a holistic data-first modernization plan.
“As much as multicloud has come into existence to solve a lot of problems, it has introduced one massive problem: It’s turned the IT estate into a three-dimensional chessboard,” Irvine says. “A lot of what occurs creates unexpected complexity and requires more strategic planning.”
A road map for multicloud simplicity
For many companies, the biggest struggle with multicloud is managing the environment as a single holistic entity, whether from a security or software compliance standpoint or for transforming disparate data repositories into a network of shared intelligence and insights that propel a data-first business.
“What is emerging as the biggest challenge for customers that are trying to leverage the flexibility of hybrid multicloud estates is the complexity that comes with that estate,” Irvine says. “How do I run that as a holistic, seamless estate with the intelligence to ensure I am placing the right elements in the right place at the right time for the right reasons?”
Aligning with the right partner and platform can help IT organizations reduce unnecessary complexity and achieve the flexibility and agility for a data-first business. With the HPE GreenLake edge-to-cloud platform, organizations can leverage an as-a-service model that spans data centers, multiple clouds, and the edge to deliver business agility and shorten time-to-insights while gaining the simplicity of a unified cloud experience.
At the same time, HPE GreenLake accelerates analytics and decreases time-to-insights through support of frictionless data movement, ensuring that data is universally accessible, no matter where it resides — whether on-premises, at a colocation site, or across multiple clouds. Data is processed and analyzed from every edge environment across the multicloud landscape with enterprise-grade controls, empowering all corners of the business with insights on demand, safely, at any scale, and in any location.
Cross-cloud transparency is traditionally a challenge for customers, but HPE GreenLake makes it easy to monitor and manage a hybrid multicloud environment as a unified platform. Organizations gain clear visibility into how, when, and where data, applications, and resources are being consumed across the entire IT estate. HPE’s full breadth of technology, services, expertise, and an extensive software vendor ecosystem brings IT and business together to tackle today’s data challenges, paving the way for the next wave of digital transformation and data-first business success.
HPE’s investment in artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning, and MLOps technologies is a critical asset in the road map for simplifying multicloud deployment. HPE GreenLake delivers an automated cloud management platform that works harmoniously with the suite of management tools necessary to support the entire data estate while enabling insights to deliver a 360-degree view of the business, including security and compliance considerations.
“We realized years ago that AI was the path to demystifying the hybrid estate,” Irvine explains. “We’ve invested on the platform side and brought together HPE and best-of-breed capabilities from our ecosystem to bring all the elements together in a single, holistic platform.”
Beyond the array of technology solutions aimed at simplifying the multicloud experience, HPE’s consulting services can help fill in IT expertise gaps required for deploying and managing multicloud environments and advancing your data-first business. In lieu of staffing experts with competencies across the entire landscape, the HPE GreenLake platform and HPE management services serve as a universal translator for today’s three-dimensional IT estate.
“We can present the hybrid multicloud estate in a single dashboard and with a single language, so customers don’t have to speak different languages,” Irvine says. “We act as the universal translator, and the expertise of our people and our deep ITIL [Information Technology Infrastructure Library]–based processes leave customers with the confidence that they’re in a safe pair of hands across the hybrid multicloud estate.”
For more on how HPE GreenLake simplifies multicloud, visit https://www.hpe.com/us/en/greenlake.html.