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Reducing Cloud Overspend By Increasing Network Visibility

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(Source: Pixabay)

The usage of cloud technologies has become highly ubiquitous in the digital age, providing global businesses with incredible networking and computing benefits, including improved efficiencies, security, flexibility, mobility, and collaboration capabilities.

As a result of the recent pandemic, cloud adoption has experienced unprecedented growth and is still expected to rise exponentially higher. According to a report by Gartner, end-user spending on public cloud services is predicted to grow 18.4% in 2021 to total $304.9 billion.

Unfortunately, the significant usage of cloud services can also cause confusion, specifically within the realm of cloud overspending. According to Pepperdata, more than one-third of businesses have cloud budget overruns of up to 40%, and one in 12 companies even exceed that number.

A major cause of this overspend can be attributed to a lack of central visibility in cloud usage, which can cause significant unanticipated spending and overall confusion.

Progressively complex cloud architectures

With enterprises utilizing both hybrid and multi-cloud architectures from multiple cloud providers, companies can expect cloud architectures to grow increasingly complex over time. This complexity can be attributed to the integration of various cloud models, tools, and software into existing or new digital infrastructures, which consequently gives network managers the tough task of incorporating these solutions into an augmented model.

In failing to effectively manage these complex infrastructures or rather multiple discrete and separate infrastructures, enterprises can find themselves in serious cloud over-expenditure, as over-provisioning resources leads to reduced return on investment (ROI). Additionally, this over-expenditure is exacerbated by the simultaneous utilization of traditional data center operations during the infrastructure migration process, which occurs when enterprises ready themselves for their transition to complex multi-cloud and hybrid environments.

Let’s add billing to the mix

Making matters worse, hybrid and cloud environments can also contribute to overly complicated billing structures and charges, as there is no universal cloud vendor billing model. With each vendor offering different payment models and each organization leveraging multiple providers for different licensing options, usage models (based on personnel or department), or even project-based needs, an organization’s network visibility can be blurred, resulting in added complexity when trying to optimize costs.

Network visibility: When seeing makes all the difference

In addition to cost inefficiencies, there are other issues that can arise when organizations lack full cloud visibility, specifically within the realm of operations. Overlapping address spaces, for example, can result in network integration and migration issues. It’s crucial that when organizations integrate new cloud structures that they do so meticulously, ensuring that they maintain network visibility and management of network operations across their infrastructure.

Additionally, complex, multiplatform networks are breeding grounds for human errors that can lead to configuration errors and component failures from both an operational and security perspective. Security concerns caused by limited visibility can create vulnerabilities, like unnoticed stale DNS records, which bad actors can then exploit. It only takes one spoofed subdomain to significantly damage business operations. 

As enterprises across the globe continue to incorporate cloud technologies into their infrastructures, it is clear that the complexities from this integration can lead to cloud overspend, revenue leakage, and other serious security issues. By providing network managers with full visibility into these environments, organizations can unify address spaces across hybrid and multi-cloud networks and keep an eye on all of the moving parts. With cloud adoption only increasing, enterprises will need to embrace and implement scalable network orchestration platforms that will allow them to optimize their efficiencies, operations and, most importantly, prevent wasteful overspending as they grow.

Magnus Bjornsson is CEO of Men&Mice.