What is the multi-cloud?

In 2019, the majority of successful businesses have invested in digital initiatives – or are planning to if they haven’t already done so. And, for most organisations, this means adopting some form of cloud infrastructure.

Indeed, while a recent report[1] has found that just 26% of European enterprises are using the cloud, this market is set to skyrocket as more and more companies make the transition to the could.

But, while this used to mean embracing a public, private or hybrid cloud model, today the multi-cloud provides yet another option to businesses.

What is the difference between these cloud strategies?

  • Private cloud. This is a cloud computing solution that is run and managed by the business.
  • Public cloud. Under this model, a service provider makes resources available to a business via the internet.
  • Hybrid cloud. This is where businesses deploy and manage both private and public services. Under the hybrid approach, companies benefit from the public cloud, while maintaining a private cloud, usually for issues of sensitivity, privacy and compliance. Under the hybrid approach, while these models exist separately, they also interact with each other to provide a range of combined benefits.
  • Multi-cloud. The multi-cloud uses two or more cloud computing services from any number of different cloud vendors. It can be a combination of private, public and hybrid clouds. So, with this model you can mix and match cloud services from different providers, often to meet specific workload needs. Unlike the hybrid cloud, the multi-cloud doesn’t need to be integrated.

What are the benefits of the multi-cloud?

Businesses consider a multi-cloud strategy for a variety of reasons. These include:

  • To select different cloud services from different providers based on the needs of the business
  • To eliminate the reliance on any single cloud service or provider
  • To distribute resources depending on traffic levels
  • To minimise the risk of downtime and data loss
  • To help organisations shift to the cloud at their own pace
  • To increase the computing power and storage available
  • To take advantage of fluctuating resource costs.

Does the multi-cloud lead to a disjointed IT setup?

No. Because, even though the multi-cloud doesn’t need to be integrated, multi-cloud management exists to ensure control of all the clouds (public, private, and hybrid) and all resources from one platform.

What are the disadvantages of the multi-cloud?

A multi-cloud strategy can help organisations to take advantage of the various options available to them. But that doesn’t mean that this approach is without problems.

  • The multi-cloud requires a business to manage multiple cloud providers
  • Organisations must be able to deal with complex cloud management (and there is a shortage of skilled professionals available to manage these environments)
  • Multi-clouds require extra work to ensure effective security, governance and compliance. Indeed, with various third-parties having access to different data and systems, it’s vital to define and distribute security responsibilities clearly.

As such, many SMEs prefer to stick with one trusted cloud provider.

Regardless of the approach you choose, if you want to keep up with the competition cloud adoption is a matter of when, not if. But with many companies preferring a mixed approach to their IT infrastructure – not least because there is a range of appealing SaaS solutions available – it makes sense to understand all the options.

To find out how our cloud services can benefit your business, speak to a member of our team on 01942 263 434 today.

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[1] Eurostat