While many organisations have embraced cloud technologies, they could still be missing a trick when it comes to effectively managing their cloud deployments, particularly if they’ve taken a multi-cloud approach.

Businesses managing multiple clouds must understand how to leverage cloud orchestration to manage everything from service management down to the technology layer. Taking this business first approach, assists organisations in removing technology risk and reduces the lag between technology advancement and business need.  Done properly, orchestration provides governance, visibility, and control of all services in the context of changing business needs.

However, a recent global survey by Fujitsu found that 54 per cent of organisations said their cloud estate was too complex to manage. Other challenges included security, process, compliance, and technical.

Orchestration could be the answer to these challenges.

And with that in mind, perhaps it’s no surprise that a significant percentage of the organisations we surveyed said they either had plans to adopt cloud orchestration within the next two years, or they already use it.  Moreover, the dominant orchestration approach is cloud native (85%), rather than an abstraction based approach (15%).  Taking a cloud native approach allows you to reach a level of automation and orchestration which is in step with the rapidly changing power of the platforms.

Let’s take a look at why orchestration is so important.

Control

Shadow IT, dispersed IT decision-making models, and a lack of visibility means it’s all too common for organisations to find that their cloud infrastructure is becoming complex and murky. This lack of control is a concern, particularly when it comes to security and cost-efficiency. Cutting complexity and regaining control is essential.

95 per cent of survey respondents said security was either challenging or very challenging when it came to managing their cloud estate. Meanwhile, 80 per cent said that lack of visibility was either challenging or very challenging.

Complexity

Complexity is a major issue in managing cloud because of the nature of hybrid and multi-cloud estates and due to the plethora of vendors to consider. Some companies have more than 50 vendors to manage, and this could increase over the next 12 months. In Australia, 56 per cent of survey respondents said they lack in-house skills to effectively manage their cloud estate.

With these challenges in mind, orchestration emerges as the most useful solution.

Six pillars of orchestration

By applying orchestration, businesses can take back control of the cloud landscape and achieve operational efficiencies and flexibility along with increased control and visibility. There are six key pillars of orchestration; each offers a different set of benefits:

  1. Service orchestration: maintains a seamless service and customer experience to the end user, even in a multi-cloud environment.
  2. Supplier orchestration: helps manage a complex supplier ecosystem and, while offering potential for self-governance, also reduces the risk of shadow IT.
  3. Security orchestration: design for verification with a zero trust architecture, proactively secure and prevent threats and vulnerabilities, whilst responding faster to real security attacks.
  4. Process orchestration: joins up the delivery of IT value from end to end, presenting complex digital services as connected and integrated services, delivered through an agile model.
  5. Compliance orchestration: lets you set comprehensive policies to detect and prevent compliance breaches and ensure you remain in control of governance.
  6. Technical orchestration: covers the integration of the different public and private clouds, SaaS, and traditional IT environments with APIs, security, data portability, and dynamic workload management.

The business value in orchestration is bringing it all together to deliver a secure, seamless user experience and help drive the business forward. However, 51 per cent of survey participants were concerned about choosing the most appropriate vendor for cloud orchestration, while 55 per cent were concerned about cost implications.

If your business is considering orchestration, it is important to ensure you are with the right cloud service provider. Ideally, your cloud service provider understands what orchestration is all about, how it can help your business, and how it can be deployed for your business.

The next step is to work with your cloud service provider to set a strategy for orchestration.

To find out how Fujitsu can help, contact us today.

To view the full State of Orchestration report and see how you compare to the 253 enterprise organisations in the survey , click here.