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Perspectives | Keeping businesses afloat with cloud-powered digitalization

Cloud platforms (hybrid-cloud, multicloud) hold the key to business survival in the COVID-19 era. Here is one expert’s views on multicloud.

June 29, 2020 4 minute read

by Huey Ong, Systems Engineering Director & Head of Engineering, APJ, World Wide Technology

In a blink of an eye, the COVID-19 pandemic has drastically changed consumers’ expectations and how businesses operate. Entire workforces have been forced to operate remotely for business continuity, while the digital economy received a major boost due to forced closures and operating restrictions.

As society slowly eases out of lockdowns, it is critical that businesses accept that things will never be the same again. Knowing that, there is an urgent need to adapt to a landscape that demands flexibility and agility. With uncertainty looming, businesses must prepare for events like a second wave of infections, and along with it a whole new set of consumer needs and preferences.

Since the outbreak, multicloud adoption has become the go-to strategy in the business world, enabling businesses to take advantage of the different strengths and features that cloud partners offer. In fact, it is predicted that by 2021, over 90% of enterprises in the Asia Pacific region (APAC) excluding Japan) will rely a mix of on-premises/dedicated private cloud, several public cloud and legacy platforms to meet their infrastructure needs.

With this prediction in mind, businesses must take steps to ensure their IT infrastructure enables them to be both agile and flexible. While we learn to roll with the punches that the rest of 2020 throws at us, here are three attributes of multicloud that may suit businesses needing to adjust and excel while staying afloat.

  1. A positive and productive remote working experience
    As enterprises adopt cloud strategies to keep their businesses running while concurrently implementing flexible work arrangements to keep employees safe, many may find the idea of managing multiple clouds overwhelming. Contrary to popular belief, working with more than one provider is no longer a complicated task. With a proper cloud management platform established, businesses will have full visibility across accounts and providers from a single dashboard.

    As we know, it can be a frustrating experience when tasks are prolonged all because of slow information retrieval times. One benefit a multicloud set-up has over a single cloud one is the reduction of user-perceived latency using data centers across various geographical locations. By cutting out routing inefficiencies, staff can access the information they need quickly from company servers, which in turn boosts productivity.
     
  2. Achieve significant cost savings
    Optimizing cost has always been top-of-mind for business leaders as it directly impacts a business’s growth. From a cloud perspective, this involves having the right workload in the right cloud at the right time–the sort of flexibility that a multicloud environment offers.

    With efficiency playing a key role in saving costs, more work can occur independently by leveraging a combination of clouds through the separation of workloads. In addition, working with multiple vendors gives businesses the ability to prioritize how they want to spend and not how much they have to spend when vendor lock-in occurs.

    To ensure cloud spending remains optimized, businesses can organize monthly or quarterly reviews to ensure they are not spending too much or estimating too little.
     
  3. Getting ahead of the game
    With technology constantly evolving, it is important for businesses to not only keep up but get ahead to achieve a competitive edge in this fast-paced world. As multicloud adoption increases, businesses must take steps to hone their strategies. When it comes to holistic multicloud strategies, Kubernetes is often considered a must-have platform to simplify storage and compartmentalize workloads across on-premise, off-premise and public cloud environments.

    Multicloud Kubernetes plays a critical role in helping enterprise cloud service solutions stay relevant through customization and extension. Instead of agonizing over managing these technologies, Kubernetes allows businesses to focus on what matters, like optimizing resources on the go and enabling the automation of deployments especially during times of expansion.

    This is one reason why a recent study found that 59% of large organizations use Kubernetes in production, a figure that will likely grow given how it has enabled possibilities for modern cloud architecture.

Onwards to a more digitalized world

The disruption caused by the current pandemic has reinforced the importance of the business agility and flexibility in responding to fluctuations. To wrest opportunity from adversity, business leaders can rely on the ability of the Cloud to adapt and stay afloat.

On top of meeting the current needs of workplaces, digitalization allows businesses to quickly respond to unexpected disruptions. Having passed the test of helping business navigate a pandemic, the future of multicloud and its role in facilitating digitalization looks promising.

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