Many organizations are deploying a multicloud strategy, citing reasons such as avoiding vendor lock-in and competitive pricing, among others. However, while cloud platforms are becoming central to many businesses' broader digital transformation strategies, some companies have no plans to take a multicloud approach.
TechRepublic Premium conducted an online survey to find out why some companies are continuing with mulitcloud migration and expansion plans, and how they are managing it, while others have hit the pause button.
The survey asked the following questions:
According to survey respondents, 81% currently use, or plan to use within the next 12 months, a multicloud deployment. Of available public cloud platforms, Microsoft Azure (79%) was the most popular, followed by Amazon Web Services (AWS) at 56%, specialized application or service providers (44%), and Google Cloud Platform (35%). IBM Cloud (16%), Oracle Cloud (16%), Alibaba Cloud (7%), Tencent Cloud (5%), and Fujitsu Cloud Services (5%) ranked in the bottom half of the survey.
In a similar survey from 2019, more than two-thirds of survey respondents used, or planned to use, services from multiple cloud vendors. Of the available public cloud platforms, Microsoft Azure and Amazon Web Services (AWS) were the most popular choice for survey respondents, at 78% and 77%, respectively. Forty-three percent of survey respondents used Google Cloud Platform, and 23% of respondents used Oracle Cloud. A smaller amount of respondents cited IBM Cloud (13%) and Alibaba Cloud (12%) as their cloud provider of choice. Only 5% of respondents enlisted the services of Tencent Cloud and Fujitsu Cloud Services.
Avoiding vendor lock-in dominated the list of potential benefits for taking a multicloud approach according to 74% of this year's respondents, and 73% of last year's respondents. Competitive pricing ranked second place for both this year's (58%) and last year's (65%) respondents, as well.
Despite the many potential benefits of multicloud, respondents did mention several challenges of managing multiple cloud providers. A resounding 74% of this year's respondents, and 72% of last year's respondents recognized complexity as their biggest challenge. This year, security (60%), managing costs (40%) and migrating applications (40%) rounded out the list of top challenges. While in 2019, migrating applications and security were noted challenges for 48% of respondents, and managing costs was a challenge for 43% of respondents.
In addition, the COVID-19 pandemic has either accelerated plans that were already in place or expanded cloud services for 40% of respondents, and it caused 9% to create a cloud policy. It did, however, slow down adoption of cloud services for 7% of respondents, and 40% of respondents admitted that COVID-19 did not change their cloud strategy.
To read all of the survey results, plus analysis, download the full report here: Research: Managing multicloud in the enterprise; benefits, barriers, and most popular cloud platforms.