Avoid These 6 Multicloud Management Pitfalls

Multicloud management has become increasingly popular in recent years as organizations look to take advantage of the flexibility, scalability and redundancy offered by multiple cloud providers. However, managing multiple clouds can be a complex and challenging task, and there are several pitfalls to watch out for. In this article, we’ll explore six of the most common multicloud management pitfalls and provide tips on how to avoid them. Whether you’re new to multicloud management or a seasoned pro, these tips can help you get the most out of your multicloud environment while minimizing risk and maximizing efficiency.

Some of the Biggest Pitfalls

Some of the biggest multicloud management pitfalls include:

  1. Lack of visibility. With multiple clouds, it can be difficult to get a complete view of all the resources being used, leading to blind spots and potential security risks.
  2. Data integration issues. Moving data between different cloud environments can be challenging, and compatibility issues can arise.
  3. Security risks. Different cloud environments can have different security protocols, and managing security across multiple clouds can be challenging.
  4. Vendor lock-in. Using multiple clouds can increase the risk of being locked into specific vendors, which can make it difficult to switch to different providers in the future.
  5. Cost management. Managing costs across multiple clouds can be challenging, and it can be difficult to optimize spending when resources are spread across multiple providers.
  6. Lack of in-house expertise. It can be challenging for organizations to have the necessary expertise in-house to manage multiple clouds effectively, especially as new cloud technologies and services are constantly emerging. Without sufficient expertise, organizations may struggle to properly design, implement, and manage their multicloud environments, leading to potential security risks, increased costs and inefficiencies.

Avoiding the Pitfalls

Now that we’ve identified some of the biggest pitfalls, let’s look at how they can be avoided.

Lack of Visibility

To avoid the pitfall of “lack of visibility,” here are some strategies that organizations can consider:

  1. Standardize monitoring and logging. Adopt a standardized approach for monitoring and logging across all cloud providers. This can be achieved by using a cloud management platform that integrates with multiple cloud providers or by leveraging native monitoring tools provided by cloud providers.
  2. Implement a centralized dashboard. Implement a centralized dashboard that provides a unified view of all cloud resources, allowing IT teams to quickly identify and resolve issues. This can be achieved by using a cloud management platform or a third-party tool that integrates with multiple cloud providers.
  3. Use automation. Automation can help IT teams manage multicloud environments more efficiently and reduce the risk of human error. Automated workflows can be used for tasks such as provisioning resources, configuring security policies and scaling resources up or down.
  4. Define clear roles and responsibilities. Clearly define roles and responsibilities for managing multicloud environments, and ensure that all stakeholders have a clear understanding of their responsibilities. This can help to avoid confusion and ensure that issues are quickly identified and resolved.
  5. Regularly review and optimize your multicloud management strategy. Regularly review and optimize your multicloud management strategy to ensure that it remains effective and aligned with business objectives. This can involve assessing the effectiveness of existing tools and processes and identifying opportunities to improve efficiency and reduce costs.

Data Integration Issues

To avoid data integration issues, consider these best practices:

  1. Define your data integration requirements. Start by identifying your data integration needs and the types of data you will be working with. Determine how data needs to be integrated across the different cloud platforms and the data sources that need to be integrated.
  2. Choose the right integration approach. Identify the most appropriate data integration approach, such as ETL (Extract, Transform, Load), EAI (Enterprise Application Integration) or API (Application Programming Interface) integration, based on your specific requirements and the cloud platforms you’re working with. 
  3. Leverage cloud-native integration tools. Consider using cloud-native integration tools that are purpose-built for the specific cloud platforms you’re working with. For example, Azure offers Azure Data Factory, a cloud-based data integration service. Comparably, AWS offers AWS Glue, a fully managed ETL service.
  4. Maintain a centralized data hub. Maintain a centralized data hub that acts as a single source of truth for all data sources. This hub should provide a unified view of all data across the different cloud platforms, allowing for easier data integration and management.
  5. Use data governance and security best practices. Implement data governance and security best practices to ensure data is properly secured and managed across all cloud platforms. This includes controlling access to data, maintaining data quality and ensuring compliance with regulations such as HIPAA.
  6. Monitor and optimize data integration. Monitor and optimize your data integration processes to ensure they are running smoothly and efficiently. This includes setting up alerts and notifications for data integration issues as well as regularly reviewing performance metrics to identify areas for optimization.

Security Risks

Consider implementing the following best practices to avoid security risks:

  1. Use a centralized security platform. Implement a centralized security platform to manage security policies across all clouds. This can help ensure that consistent security policies are enforced across all cloud environments, reducing the risk of misconfigurations or security gaps.
  2. Implement identity and access management (IAM) controls. Use IAM controls to manage access to cloud resources and ensure that users are only granted the minimum necessary privileges to perform their job functions. This can help prevent unauthorized access and reduce the risk of data breaches.
  3. Use encryption and secure data transfer protocols. Encrypt data both in transit and at rest, and use secure data transfer protocols to protect sensitive data. This can help prevent data breaches and ensure data privacy.
  4. Monitor and audit cloud activity. Implement real-time monitoring and logging to detect and respond to security incidents. This can help you identify potential security risks and respond quickly to incidents.
  5. Regularly assess and review security posture. Regularly assess and review the security posture of your cloud environments to identify vulnerabilities and address them before they are exploited.

Vendor Lock-in

To avoid “vendor lock-in,” there are a few strategies that can be employed:

  1. Adopt open standards. Implementing open standards for cloud services, APIs and data formats can help avoid being tied to a particular vendor. This allows organizations to move workloads and data more easily between different clouds and avoid vendor-specific dependencies.
  2. Use multicloud management tools. Employing a multicloud management platform can provide a single interface for managing multiple clouds and can also help avoid being locked into a single vendor.
  3. Plan for cloud portability. When developing applications or workloads, it’s important to consider portability across multiple clouds. This can include designing applications to be cloud-agnostic or using containerization or serverless technologies to make workloads more portable.
  4. Negotiate flexible contracts. When working with cloud vendors, it’s important to negotiate contracts that provide flexibility and avoid long-term commitments. This can include short-term contracts, pay-as-you-go pricing, or other flexible terms that allow organizations to switch vendors more easily.
  5. Consider using open-source software. Open-source software can be a good option for avoiding vendor lock-in because it is not tied to a specific vendor and is often portable across different cloud environments. Organizations can also contribute to and benefit from the wider open-source community and can avoid paying for proprietary software licenses.

Cost Management

Here are some ways to avoid the “cost management” pitfall:

  1. Plan ahead. Before you start using multiple clouds, make sure you have a clear understanding of the services and features you need, and how much they will cost. This will help you avoid any surprises when it comes to billing.
  2. Use cost management tools. Many cloud providers offer tools that can help you monitor and manage your costs, such as cost calculators and budget alerts. Take advantage of these tools to help you stay on top of your spending.
  3. Optimize your usage. Look for ways to optimize your usage of cloud resources, such as using auto-scaling to adjust your capacity based on demand, or turning off resources when they’re not in use.
  4. Leverage discounts and savings programs. Many cloud providers offer discounts and savings programs, such as reserved instances or spot instances, that can help you save money. Be sure to take advantage of these programs where appropriate.
  5. Monitor your usage. Regularly monitor your usage of cloud resources to identify any areas where you might be overspending, and take action to reduce your costs where possible.
  6. Use a cloud management platform. Consider using a cloud management platform that can help you monitor and manage your usage across multiple clouds, and provide you with insights and recommendations for optimizing your costs.

Lack of In-House Expertise

To avoid the pitfall of “lack of in-house expertise,” organizations can take the following steps:

  1. Train and upskill existing employees. Organizations can train their existing employees on the technologies and tools required for multicloud management. This can include training on cloud platforms, cloud security and cloud governance.
  2. Hire new employees with relevant expertise. Organizations can hire new employees with relevant expertise in multicloud management. This can include cloud architects, cloud engineers, and cloud security experts.
  3. Leverage cloud management tools. Cloud management tools can provide a unified view of multiple cloud environments and help automate management tasks. These tools can help organizations reduce the need for specialized expertise in each cloud environment.
  4. Implement a cloud center of excellence (CCoE). A CCoE is a team of experts who provide guidance and support for cloud adoption and management. This team can help ensure that the organization has the necessary expertise to manage multiple cloud environments.
  5. Partner with a managed services provider like AIS Network. Sometimes, you just cannot do it all on your own – nor should most organizations. Partner with AISN, a managed services provider that has expertise in multicloud management. This can help fill any gaps in expertise and provide additional support for managing multiple clouds.

In conclusion, managing multiple clouds can be complex, but with careful planning and implementation, organizations can avoid common pitfalls and maximize the benefits of multicloud environments. As discussed, avoiding pitfalls such as lack of visibility, data integration issues, security risks, vendor lock-in, cost management and lack of in-house expertise can be achieved through standardization, automation, centralized dashboards, data governance and security, planning, leveraging multicloud management tools, negotiating flexible contracts and partnering with experts like AISN.

With years of experience in multicloud management for both the public and private sectors and years of expertise in cloud security, the AISN Team can provide the necessary support and skill to help organizations like yours effectively manage their multicloud environments. Don’t hesitate to reach out to us and see how we can help you get the most out of your multicloud environment.


Laurie Head has more than 25 years of IT industry experience and is a co-owner of AIS Network.