Kubernetes, Cloud Native, Container Management, Enterprise Kubernetes

Failing in the Cloud–How to Turn It Around

Sep 26, 2023

Michael Neubarth


Failing in the Cloud

Success in the cloud continues to be elusive for many organizations. A recent Forbes article describes how financial services firms are struggling to succeed in the cloud, citing Accenture Research that found that only 40% of banks and less than half of insurers fully achieved their expected outcomes from migrating to cloud.


Similarly, a 2022 KPMG Technology Survey found that 67% of organizations said they had failed to receive a return on investment in the cloud.  


Techcrunch reports that “cloud-first strategies may be hitting the limits of their efficacy, and in many cases, ROIs are diminishing, triggering a major cloud backlash.” The author ascribes the problems to out-of-control costs, deepening complexity, restrictive vendor lock-in, and cloud sprawl.


Misguided Cloud Strategies

In “Companies are still waiting for their cloud ROI,” David Linthicum writes that, “We’ve learned that most enterprises do not use cloud in business-optimized ways and thus end up missing the promised ROI.” 


Similarly, CIO.com reports that, “Overall, disappointment comes from poor planning most of the time.” A common reason for failure is that companies put information assets on the cloud in a “lift and shift” operation so their applications never benefit from the advantages of cloud, such as elasticity. 


Inefficient cloud and data center architectures also lead to excessive costs, says CIO.com. “If you move the front end of an application to the cloud, but leave the back end in your data center, then all of a sudden you’re paying for two sets of infrastructure.”   


Many enterprises just push scads of applications and databases onto cloud platforms and then wonder why their cloud bill is so high,” says Linthicum. “The scary part,” he says, “is that people making decisions often don’t understand how to get to an optimized solution.”


Turnaround Is Hard Work

It’s easy for everyone to get in a circle and blame bad technology decisions on the deficiencies of cloud computing ROI, says Linthicum. “The harder but more productive conversation is how to put cloud systems on a more cost- and business-efficient path.”


To succeed, he says, you need to build cloud-based configurations of technology that are better than the “as is” state. To reverse the losses and achieve positive cloud ROI requires optimization, FinOps, and refactoring, he notes. 


CIO.com advises organizations to follow Gartner’s Cloud Strategy Cookbook 2023, which calls for developing a cloud strategy before moving to the cloud, regularly updating the strategy, keeping a record in a living document, and aligning your cloud strategy with desired business outcomes. 


Although many organizations are considering cloud repatriation, migrating back from the cloud is not an easy process and too many organizations do so with equally poor planning, warns CIO.com.


Formula for Success

Organizations that are failing in the cloud can reverse their losses and get on a winning track by doing the hard work Lithicum describes. In doing so, employing automation is a key element for success. 


As IBM notes in 4 Failure Patterns to Avoid in Cloud Modernization, “The only way technology teams have a hope of keeping up with expectations is if they drive very high levels of automation.” Unfortunately, the article notes, many companies fail to invest in the automation necessary to transform IT and  take advantage of the new technologies. 


The best way to succeed is to employ a highly automated Kubernetes platform that provides centralized multi-cluster, multi-cloud fleet management, is based on declarative APIs and GitOps, and includes self-healing capabilities, observability, and cost controls. 


This can be achieved by deploying a feature-complete, production-ready Kubernetes platform that essentially provides instant platform engineering. This type of platform also will provide an ideal setting for FinOps and DevSecOps.


It also is important to employ a platform based on pure CNCF-conformant Kubernetes.This gives you portability, easier upgradeability, and trouble-free extensibility by easily accommodating the innovation that continually arises within the open-source community. 


To learn more about how you can turn around a failing cloud deployment and avoid failing in the first place, access these resources: 


To book a personal consultation, contact the experts at D2iQ.

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