Raconteur

Cloud for Business 2020

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C L O U D F O R B U S I N E S S 10 he says. "They need to determine exactly what services they need to do this and exactly how they can obtain those services." The IITI highlights the impor- tance of the planning stage when 39 per cent of respondents revealed that a proportion of their cloud waste could be traced directly back to planning issues, while 44 per cent identified trying to determine whether public, private or hybrid cloud was the best fit for what they were trying to achieve. Successful digital transformation requires a clear understanding of what a business wants to achieve from the technology it's embracing, for example is it trying to increase agility or cut costs? "Think about non-production resources," says Jay Chapel co- founder and chief executive of ParkMyCloud. "Most of these are only used during the working week and don't need to be running 24/7, which means for almost three quar- ters of the week they sit idle, but are still paid for." Overprovisioned resources are also a problem that occurs dur- ing planning, according to Chapel, and in many instances a busi- ness will have been paying for vir- tual machines that are larger than needed for their workloads. "Employees also need to under- stand exactly how the cloud differs from legacy environments," explains Uzoegwu, "so they won't make costly assumptions in procurement. "Even if it plans perfectly, the enterprise still needs to have full visibility and control over its cloud environments. It needs to ensure it has the right tools for the job, not only to manage dynamic cloud envi - ronments, but the new approaches and technologies the cloud allows, such as microservices, containers, serverless computing and DevOps." According to the IITI, 36 per cent of enterprises cited a lack of visibility as a reason for cloud waste, but this can be minimised with the adoption of artificial intel - ligence (AI) tools, says Michael Allen, vice president, Europe, Middle East and Africa, of software intelligence company Dynatrace. Enterprises big and small are investing in cloud services that aren't utilised, resulting in millions wasted each year, and the numbers are only likely to rise "Organisations need the assis- tance of AI to understand what's going on in their cloud," says Allen. "They can then use that intelligence to automatically scale their cloud services up and down in line with their needs at any particular point in time. That way they can ensure they are only paying for the cloud services they need." This is particularly relevant dur - ing the current global health cri- sis as its ripple effects prompt com- panies to purchase software in the cloud to help them maintain busi- ness continuity, making previously purchased software obsolete. "When it's so easy to spin up, spin down or move applications and infrastructure, it can be tempt- ing for individual business units to simply purchase what they need, when they need it," says Uzoegwu. "This can lead to a cloud sprawl with potentially duplicate services or services that are still being paid for long after they have stopped being of any use. "Ultimately, for organisations to truly drive enterprise-wide agility, innovate faster and modernise the way they work, they need to rethink their approach to cloud and treat it like any other IT project." After all, moving to the cloud shouldn't be a leap of faith. It needs to be a well-disciplined and well-pro - visioned move, so a business can minimise cloud waste and ensure valuable resources, which should be working towards company growth, aren't evaporating into thin air. successful digital transformation, the importance of which has only been highlighted by the impact of COVID-19, which has forced them to become more agile. However, in the race to modernise their infra- structure rapidly, many are poten- tially overextending themselves in the cloud. The 2019 European Insight Intelligent Technology Index (IITI) revealed organisations were allo- cating more than £29 million every year for cloud spending, but that 30 per cent of this money was bank- rolling services laying dormant, aste not, want not. In challenging and uncer- tain times this reassuring refrain is one that we often return to as it reminds us to make the most of our resources. It's a phrase that's par- ticularly relevant these days to enter- prises investing heavily in the cloud as a critical part of their coronavirus response. But they are failing to iden- tify that cloud waste could eventu- ally become a limiting factor to suc- cess beyond the pandemic. Forward-thinking businesses have, quite rightly, identified that cloud services are essential to a W Jon Axworthy Why firms are wasting their cloud spending resulting in £8.8 million wasted cloud expenditure annually. Further predictions from Gartner, released at the end of 2019, forecast cloud waste would exceed an eye-watering £14.2 billion in 2020. Of course, since these figures were released there has been a global scramble by businesses to increase cloud capacity to deal with the extra demands brought about by their organisational response to the virus. The almost overnight shift to remote working has only added to the rapid adoption of cloud services as enterprises seek to relocate infra - structure to minimise disruption. This suggests the numbers may have to be revised upwards by the time 2020 finally draws to a close. But why are so many digital trans- formation business models out of sync with their cloud services? Ozioma Uzoegwu, lead cloud architect at systems integration company Insight, believes idle cloud estates are born out of inef- fective planning. "Organisations need to know exactly how they want the cloud to transform their business and help meet its goals before they move," Most resources are only used during the week and don't need to be running 24/7, which means they sit idle, but are still paid for W A S T E 30% of the £29 million organisations spend on average each year on the cloud is not utilised Insight 2019 TOP CHALLENGES FOR MANAGING CLOUD BUDGE TS Insight 2019 Difficulty determining best- fit workloads for public, private, hybrid cloud Difficulty planning and allocating budget for cloud consumption 44% 39% 37% Lack of visibility of used ser vices at the cost centre, workload and application level

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