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As featured on BusinessMirror: Mastering a multi-cloud environment

LEADING businesses are embracing the critical advantages of a modern multi-cloud model amid both the global pandemic’s profound impact and the pressing need to optimize data security, costs, business continuity and disaster recovery in today’s dynamic and threat-laden digital economy.

The multi-cloud trend going forward is expected to quickly move beyond the current focus on initial adoption—ultimately optimizing capabilities to control rising cloud costs, enhance security and match applications to the best fit among today’s various cloud features and services. Relying on multiple cloud services provides “optionality”—a workload better-suited to the capabilities of one cloud provider is not limited by reliance on a single provider that a business is already working with.

Multiple challenges in a multi-cloud environment

AS more businesses embrace the unmistakable advantages of multi-cloud, they are facing the need to manage significant challenges that include:

  1. Complexity and management. Cloud providers have been differentiating themselves with specialized offerings designed to suit specific and evolving business requirements. While this offers significant advantages, managing multiple cloud environments among different providers also adds complexity to your IT infrastructure. Each cloud provider may have its own set of tools, Application Programming Interfaces (APIs) and management interfaces, requiring additional effort to integrate and coordinate operations across platforms. As these technologies evolve, they grow more complex–leading to increased costs, resource allocation challenges and potential security risks that cannot be ignored.
  2. Interoperability and compatibility. Applications and services designed for one cloud provider may not seamlessly work across others. Porting or migrating applications between different clouds can be complex and time consuming, requiring modifications or redesigning to adapt to different infrastructure and service offerings. Poor interoperability hinders agility and your ability to leverage specific cloud features or tools. The cloud landscape is changing frequently, making it crucial that your cloud-selection strategy remains current to meet workload needs and capitalize on today’s best available services. If a specific workload needs to scale significantly and quickly, for example, how will you choose between various platforms and capabilities?
  3. Security and compliance. Managing security and compliance across multiple cloud environments is far more challenging than working with a single cloud provider. The complexity of a multi-cloud architecture can increase the threat of a cyber-attack. Each cloud service and platform may have its own security controls and compliance standards to help ensure consistent security measures and regulatory adherence. There is also the challenge of ensuring appropriate identity- and access-management mechanisms—giving employees reliable and secure access to diverse systems and processes both today and as workloads evolve amid new cloud features and services. You need appropriate workflows, controls and procedures. Careful coordination and monitoring of security and compliance needs is critical.
  4. Rising costs. Cost management is a leading concern as businesses pursue multi-cloud’s advantages. While a multi-cloud strategy enhances flexibility, it can quickly drive-up costs. Services and capabilities can overlap across multiple cloud providers. There is also the challenge of data transfer and egress fees that can mount when shifting data between clouds. Businesses may need to dedicate valuable time and effort to negotiate and establish favorable pricing agreements among multiple service providers and diverse pricing models.
  5. Technical expertise. Utilizing multiple cloud platforms requires specialized skills and expertise if you hope to effectively manage each cloud provider’s unique features and ecosystem. The demand today for diverse skillsets can pose significant challenges regarding the recruitment and training of qualified professionals, plus the need to retain these experts as businesses compete for talent and new skills in the digital economy. But new skills are now indispensable to success.

While there are challenges and key considerations in implementing a multi-cloud environment, businesses in the Philippines continue to invest in enhancing their cloud storage and computing systems to improve their capabilities, recognizing the advantages it brings.

“Transitioning to a multi-cloud environment comes with its challenges, but with proper implementation and unified governance, a secure and resilient multi-cloud framework can be implemented,” said KPMG in the Philippines Technology Consulting Head Jallain Marcel S. Manrique.

Transitioning to a multi-cloud environment comes with its challenges, but with proper implementation and unified governance, a secure and resilient multi-cloud framework can be implemented

Jallain Marcel S. Manrique
Technology Consulting Head
KPMG in the Philippines

KPMG multi-cloud framework

KPMG professionals are working to make a difference for clients with a multi-cloud framework designed to provide smart and informed management of financial, technical and security requirements and operations-governance capabilities.

  • This approach is designed to provide clients with the advantages of a multi-cloud model covering all phases–from strategy and on-boarding to ongoing operations.
  • It aims to identify key technical activities in your cloud setup, on-boarding and application migration.
  • It provides a detailed checklist developed for each stage to help verify that controls are precisely executed as needed.

A multi-cloud model is inevitable for most organizations and KPMG specialists are helping clients transition to this operating model in a secure, compliant, cost-effective manner. The framework and methodologies are developed and tested through work with major global enterprises and aligns with common regulatory frameworks and guidelines.

The excerpt was taken from the KPMG Thought Leadership publication: https://kpmg.com/xx/en/home/insights/2023/10/mastering-a-multi-cloud-environment.html

© 2024 R.G. Manabat & Co., a Philippine partnership and a member firm of the KPMG global organization of independent member firms affiliated with KPMG International Limited, a private English company limited by guarantee. All rights reserved.

For more information, you may reach out through ph-kpmgmla@kpmg.com, social media or visit www.home.kpmg/ph.

This article is for general information purposes only and should not be considered as professional advice to a specific issue or entity. The views and opinions expressed herein are those of the author and do not necessarily represent KPMG International or KPMG in the Philippines.