The cloud is in desperate need of a makeover

Posted by Mike Vizard on Jul 4, 2017 9:00:00 AM

Cloud makeover.jpegApparently, the cloud needs a makeover. That’s the conclusion to be drawn from a new survey of 300 IT professionals conducted by Fugue, Inc., a provider of management software for public and private clouds.

A full 96 percent of the respondents said cloud computing needs a makeover due to a variety of issues, including a need to make it simpler to use (33 percent), easier to secure (29 percent); easier to control costs (13 percent), and simpler to manage (10 percent).

In addition, 87 percent of IT professionals report they have experienced a cloud downtime event. To deal that issue they have implemented multi-cloud capabilities (47 percent), created more resilient applications (41 percent), or employed multi-region capabilities (38 percent).

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Of course, every managed service provider knows that pride usually goes before an internal IT organization fall. When confronted with downtime almost a quarter (24 percent) prefer to simply pass the blame. Another 19 percent say they have resorted to “prayer.” However, the survey doesn’t make it clear whether they are praying no one notices or that divine intervention would result in the problem simply fixing itself.

Cloud challenges and road blocks

The good news is that IT organizations are starting to realize there is no such thing as The Cloud. In truth, there are multiple clouds made up of their own unique stacks of software. There isn't much in the way of interoperability between those stacks, and each one requires an IT organization to master a different set of tooling.

Not surprisingly, only 20 percent of respondents said they were getting “the most” they could out of the so-called cloud, while 80 percent admitted they are not. Well over a third (36 percent) said CXOs fail to understand the complexity of the cloud, and 26 percent said IT leadership doesn’t understand that complexity either. One-fifth (20 percent) said developers are equally clueless.

The cloud computing challenges cited most often by the respondents include controlling costs (48 percent), ensuring infrastructure security and compliance (44 percent), managing increasing cloud complexity (42 percent), and meeting business agility demands (36 percent).

Opportunities for MSPs

They say the first step to recovery is admitting there’s a problem. Based on the Fugue survey, most IT professionals appear to be aware of the challenge, with almost a third being able to identify specific issues that are hampering adoption. That suggests that at least a third of IT organizations are amenable to the possibility they may need a little outside help to overcome those challenges.

MSPs, of course, are staffed by mere mortals rather than angels from on high. They tend to be much savvier about managing multiple clouds than the average internal IT organization, though. The challenge, of course, is that they expect to be paid for that expertise. This often puts them at odds with an internal IT organization that senior business leaders assumed they were already paying to solve the problem.

The real issue, of course, is that business leaders don’t understand what they're asking for, and internal IT teams are loath to admit they aren't up to the challenge. Somewhere in that dysfunctional mess, the MSP needs to insert themselves in the least offensive way to everyone concerned. Of course, sometimes conflict is unavoidable. But, the sooner everybody admits they don’t really know what they’re asking for or how to go about achieving what’s being asked for, the happier everyone involved will ultimately become.

Topics: IT Services Trends

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