Moving to the multi-cloud: Is service aggregation the future of the cloud?

The aggregation of services looks set to dominate the cloud market, as resellers increasingly bring multi-cloud models into their offering. This is being driven by demand from end-users for greater flexibility in their approach towards IT.

As more and more cloud service providers offer rolling 30-day terms, it is becoming much easier for customers to adopt a ‘pick and mix’ approach to services. This trend is being driven by several factors, including changes to working patterns and the improving ‘user experience’ of cloud services.

>See also: The multi-cloud/hybrid IT environment will come to dominate the enterprise

Aaron Watts, VP of Customer Experience at intY, explained why this trend is coming to the forefront now: “There is a growing trend towards aggregation driven by fundamental changes in the behavior of employees in the workplace over the last 3-5 years. An ever-evolving technological landscape, combined with greater worker autonomy and increased employment rights, means that we are now seeing a greater need for bespoke solutions amongst organisations.”

“The growing trend in apps and on-demand consumption services is driving increased innovation in SaaS services, delivering a much wider selection of cloud service providers. Changes in user behavior, combined with the plethora of choice in solution providers, will eventually mean that an organisation cannot avoid moving to a multi-cloud environment.”

>See also: The rise of multi-cloud and data controllers

“In addition, there are a multitude of benefits for resellers and partners when adopting a multi-cloud business model. They can generate a higher recurring revenue stream by offering multiple services, increase their customer stickiness through the aggregation of several different providers, and avoid becoming dependent on a single vendor. Ultimately, resellers and partners need to reflect and respond to customer demand, and if they want to remain profitable and successful in a rapidly changing marketplace, offering multiple cloud solutions from a range of vendors is the best way forward.”

Addressing the concerns that some organisations may have when moving to a multi-cloud environment, Watts suggested that moving to a integrating a multi-cloud environment into operations isn’t always straightforward.

>See also: A better private cloud means a better multi-cloud strategy

“The management of multiple services is likely to generate a more complicated reporting mechanism and present challenges around governance and security. Governance and security issues are prevalent topics of conversation when first discussing a single cloud deployment, but is obviously heightened when procuring from multiple providers.”

As the deadline for the General Data Protection Regulation approaches, the importance of solid data governance and authority over data owners is growing.

“The management of data sovereignty and day-to-day operations should be jointly managed with trusted technology partners to ensure a truly resilient solution stack,” said Watts.

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Nick Ismail

Nick Ismail is a former editor for Information Age (from 2018 to 2022) before moving on to become Global Head of Brand Journalism at HCLTech. He has a particular interest in smart technologies, AI and...