But channel can help firms get the business continuity, resilience and performance they really want
Despite organisations pursuing multi-cloud strategies to ensure business continuity, resilience and performance, research shows that cloud purchasing decisions are still almost entirely focused on pricing.
In a survey of 1,821 IT decision makers, the most important business drivers for the adoption of multi-cloud deployments were:
To ensure business continuity across multiple sites (77 percent of respondents)
To increase resilience (74 percent)
To reduce operational expenditure (70 percent)
To reduce capital expenditure (69 percent)
However, when selecting multi-cloud vendors, economic considerations take over: 70 percent chose pricing as a primary consideration, while only 51 percent chose service level agreements or quality of service.
Compliance, service and support and data sovereignty were all reported by less than half of respondents. With all of these considerations major factors in ensuring business continuity, resilience and consistent performance, organisations’ purchasing priorities do not support their business needs.
“Cost is, quite rightly, a significant business concern. Yet cloud success depends on much more than pricing,” said Charles Crouchman, CTO at cloud services firm Turbonomic, which conducted the research in partnership with Verizon.
“For example, an inexpensive car may not be an economic choice if it guzzles fuel and needs constant servicing and repair. Similarly, multi-cloud success relies on factors such as quality of service, compliance and support to reduce costs – far more than price alone,” said Crouchman.
Respondents identified a significant number of management challenges with multi-cloud strategies. Over 80 percent of organisations cited 12 different management challenges that they were facing. These included:
· Balancing performance and cost (90 percent of respondents)
· Delivering IT services on a budget (89 percent)
· Ensuring consistent application performance (86 percent)
· Adhering to Service Level Agreement and Quality of Service commitments (86 percent)
In fact, 85 percent of organisations see having the skills in-house to manage the cloud as a challenge in itself.
When actually comparing offerings from different cloud vendors, organisations’ biggest differentiators were security (67 percent of respondents) and performance (60 percent).
However, it’s not clear that enterprises are confident they are choosing the correct vendors. 81 percent of respondents said that choosing which workloads to place in which clouds was “challenging”. While 85 percent were concerned about evaluating different cloud vendors to meet business and technical requirements.
Channel to the Rescue
Sean Finnegan, VP channel sales at Turbonomic (which provides cloud automation services) said: “Organisations are struggling with multi-clouds in a number of ways. However, this presents multiple opportunities for the channel to add value. Organisations are struggling to align cloud purchasing with business drivers.
“The channel has the opportunity to educate customers here and talk to them about why the lowest priced cloud won’t necessarily meet their business requirements, regardless of whether they are improved application performance, resilience or longer term cost savings.”
He said: “The channel can help organisations change the way they manage multi-cloud environments through greater automation that helps make the right operational changes for them.”