Intelligent CIO Africa Issue 43 | Page 27

Q + A + Q + A + Q + A + Q + A + Q + A + Q + A + Q + A + DAMON CRAWFORD, CLOUD PLATFORM PRACTICE DIRECTOR, SIX DEGREES EDITOR’S QUESTION Multi-cloud is cloud computing’s present and future. Today’s EMEA organisations are using multiple cloud providers throughout their infrastructure estates, with a recent survey by Gartner finding that 81% of respondents worked with two or more providers. The reasons? There are plenty, but what it all comes down to is agility. At Six Degrees, we see two classes of multi-cloud adopter: SMEs, who tend to use one or two cloud providers, and larger enterprises, who will often use three, four or more. The distinction really comes down to scale – of operations, application estate, geographic spread – as the benefits of multi-cloud are achievable by almost any size of organisation. When we talk to organisations that are considering their multi-cloud strategy, they often highlight to us how multi-cloud meets their sourcing requirements: spreading commercial risk by reducing vendor lock-in, achieving appropriate data sovereignty, meeting regulatory requirements and so on. Sometimes cloud providers are introduced through application necessity – if your organisation wants to deploy PeopleSoft, for example, it makes sense to host on Oracle Cloud. These drivers are all compelling. With public cloud security continually improving and deployment and management toolkits becoming more sophisticated and effective, the barriers to entry are lower than ever before. However, we believe the true value of multi-cloud lies in aligning its inherent agility to organisational drivers. Containerisation and contemporary DevOps methods make application development faster and more secure, enabling organisations to deliver real world benefits to their people and end-users faster than ever before. These methods use multi-cloud infrastructures to deliver agile, cloud-agnostic hosting platforms that are secure, interconnected and dynamically scalable. Different elements of individual applications can be hosted on separate cloud platforms, each chosen for their specific capabilities. Ultimately the success of multi-cloud is a product of organisations’ desire to host each workload on the most appropriate platform – putting round pegs in round holes. But a balanced view of multi-cloud should acknowledge the risks it can pose. Multi-cloud management is complex and cyberthreats are becoming increasingly sophisticated. The majority of data breaches result from end-user error and introducing multiple clouds to your infrastructure estate increases the threat vectors through which cybercriminals can target your organisation. An organisation’s multi-cloud journey has the potential to bring significant benefits but should always be taken in a manner that maintains compliance, manages governance and protects brand value from cyberthreats. INTELLIGENTCIO 27