Cost Optimization with Multi-Cloud

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Introduction

Post-pandemic, the global economy has turned out to be more dynamic and aggressive than ever, leading to drastic workplace transformations. Businesses are under continuous pressure to plan, operate, innovate and most importantly, optimize costs on the cloud. Every business need is different with respect to technology, infrastructure, processes, strategies for business continuity and risk management but the most common concern revolves around costs and how to minimize and control cloud spends. 

Hybrid and multi-cloud computing, which provides maximum visibility and utilization of cloud computing resources, can play a key role here. In this blog, we will try to give you a quick introduction to multi-cloud, why it is needed today and how it can particularly help optimize costs.

Multi-cloud and its advantages

Gartner defines multi-cloud as a collection of the same set of cloud services being used where each cloud is typically managed and provided by different cloud providers. This means it enables businesses to build portable workloads that can run across multiple cloud service providers.

With multi-cloud, enterprises can more effectively and reliably enable systems and storage usage across multiple vendors, thus reducing their dependency on a single cloud provider who alone may not be able to cater to all their needs. This reduces vendor lock-ins and redundancy while ensuring that one public cloud can be used as a backup in case of another cloud’s breakdown. Multi-cloud strategies most of all, enable businesses to cater to their needs through different vendors that are best suited to their requirements and are at the same time most economically viable, leading to significant cost savings.

The multi-cloud strategy has many advantages, but there are also some challenges like security threats, increased latency and data center geography that need to be taken into consideration for better performance and reliability. Utilizing multi-cloud services can be complicated and demanding with every service provider having distinct services within themselves. Governing and managing the varied architecture, networking, security, technology, data and recovery services of each cloud service provider within their respective consoles on a multi-cloud set up is even more challenging to say the least. It takes up additional time, effort and costs and misconducts if any, could further lead businesses to compromise on quality and agility.

Based on various market research and study, it was found that 90% of surveyed mid-sized enterprises were already on the cloud and 86% of them plan to use multi-cloud environments in the next two years. There will be a significant rise in multi-cloud adoption for sure and therefore it is vital for businesses to keep in mind what works and does not work for them. The benefits that could be realized as well as how aligned are the multi-cloud offerings to their business needs definitely needs to be the key focus area.

Cost Optimization with Multi-cloud

With enterprises having enough experience in managing cloud costs over a while, the need for a complete end-to-end discipline has emerged. In the process, this practice called FinOps has unfolded to not just address the criticalities of cloud cost management but to also help devise an optimal cloud strategy. It involves budgeting for cloud usage, cost-based vendor selection and workload placements on a specific cloud provider as well as setting appropriate alert thresholds to avoid cost overruns. Cloud billing can be very complex, so working with a combination of service providers that can help with cost controls and transparency is the key.

Overall expenses can be reduced by carefully considering where and how workloads are distributed across various clouds. The cost to run a workload in IaaS is typically around 12% higher than it is in-house, and the cost to run in SaaS is approximately 21% higher. However, the most thriving businesses can run workloads in IaaS at 40% less cost than in-house and SaaS for roughly 38% less with the adoption of multi-cloud environments. These savings can be achieved by defining and using a workload placement process where enterprises can consider the said architecture when determining whether or not to shift to the cloud and how.

Best practices for multi-cloud cost optimization

  • Break free from vendor lock-ins with multi-cloud to strategize on ways to invest in cloud and how much to invest along with prioritizing spends  that can lead to notable cost savings.
  • With multi-cloud offerings there are abundant services at varied prices to choose from enabling enterprises to pick a service that is most cost-effective. For instance, if a ML based application needs a large number of computing resources, enterprises can choose resources from a service provider that is most economical.
  • Identify stakeholders – It should be a collaboration between project managers, product owners, the finance team, DevOps and a CCoE across the organization 
  • Research cloud providers and services before negotiating with vendors
  • Involve cloud brokers who are consultants for manual or automated assessment of various cloud resources providing optimal recommendations and strategies
  • Establish the right multi-cloud governance practices along with one-stop integrated management solutions to ensure complete visibility into resource utilization and costs
  • Use cross-cloud cost optimization tools to avoid cloud resource wastage and increase financial accountability
  • Avoid over-provisioning of resources by setting up auto-scaling
  • Automated monitoring of cloud resource utilization and config on a periodic basis to identify and clean up unused resources
  • Store frequently accessed data in hot storage and sporadic data in cold storage layer as hot storage like tier 1 databases cost 100 times more than the cold storage
  • Build cloud-native applications whenever feasible to make the best use of resources

Conclusion

As the multi-cloud gains momentum, the most important factor would be devising a purposeful cloud strategy to choose the right solution provider. It’s all about choosing a vendor that supports your business needs today, can scale up for your goals tomorrow and saves you money at every step of the journey.

CloudEnsure, a multi-cloud governance platform, is the answer to all the cloud cost challenges in today’s times. The tool capacitates the collection of cost data with scale in mind, creates actionable insights, provides cost recommendations and generates various cloud cost reports across all parameters on a single pane of glass.

If you are looking to gain better control and visibility over multi-cloud portfolios that can empower outcome-based enterprise transformations, get in touch with us today for a free CloudEnsure trial.


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