Posted: 09 Feb. 2023 5 min. read

Three factors that will boost cloud value in 2023

A blog post by David Linthicum, chief cloud strategy officer, Deloitte Consulting LLP 


Despite some hiccups and uncertainty around cloud costs and value, there are several factors that have the potential to positively affect how much value organizations can continue to derive from their cloud investments. They include how enterprises address cloud sustainability, the shift to multi-cloud, and supercloud strategies to rein in multi-cloud complexity. Ultimately, how enterprises handle these issues will have a large impact on their satisfaction with, and progress on, their cloud journey. 

Cloud sustainability

Even as late as five years ago, cloud sustainability wasn’t really on most people’s agenda. However, today enterprises understand that cloud computing is much greener than on-premise architectures, thanks to the cloud computing operating model, automation, and overall greener technology.

Further, what has really changed vis-à-vis sustainability goals is the increased emphasis on observability and monitoring, for which operations teams use log and telemetry data to optimize reliability and performance of cloud operations. The goal is to make cloud apps and operations more energy efficient and more environmentally friendly.

Going forward, companies will boost their sustainability and environmental strategies by leveraging next-gen cloud technology services, such as artificial intelligence and machine learning (AI/ML), blockchain, augmented reality (AR) or virtual reality (VR), and quantum computing to further optimize their operations. Another thing to consider is that companies stressing sustainability will also be more attractive to investors and other stakeholders, which can lead to increased business growth and investment and more value for their cloud investments.

The shift toward multi-cloud 

Multi-cloud is here to stay, and it’s become the de facto cloud architecture for many organizations. In a multi-cloud setup, an enterprise uses more than one cloud platform, each of which delivers specific services. A multi-cloud comprises a public, private, and hybrid cloud to achieve the organization’s goals. This is why multi-cloud is often confused with the hybrid cloud concept. But fundamentally, a hybrid cloud is an infrastructure, while multi-cloud is a strategy that leverages whatever cloud configurations and architectures will meet the organization’s needs.

As to the future of multi-cloud, as organizations become more agile, cloud infrastructure companies will start using a combination of technologies to create an ecosystem of IT tech stacks (operations, security, data integration, etc.) that enable them to move more effortlessly between hyperscalers and across their cloud ecosystems.

Further, most of the larger cloud vendors will continue working to develop technology that offers a single management layer and cross-cloud abstraction to enable their customers to move applications, data, or service components among their chosen cloud providers. This will help enterprises unify their operations, governance, and security and provide a single set of APIs to manage multi-cloud systems more seamlessly and efficiently.

Cloud complexity and superclouds

With the rise of multi-cloud comes complexity. Multiple vendors, multiple products and platforms, and different processes to hold it all together mean that multi-cloud is probably the most complex environment most software and cloud engineers have ever worked in. And when complexity rises, productivity decreases, and costs can balloon. The answer lies in simplifying the environment, but that’s hard to do because every platform, every tool, every function does something necessary—if not critical.

Enter superclouds (or meta-clouds). Superclouds are that management and abstraction layer I referred to in the last section. They’re not necessarily a particular tool but more of a set of tools, technologies, and concepts that are implemented to “hold the cloud together” and make it possible to manage your cloud ecosystem with a single pane of glass—or close to it.

Superclouds are really powerful instruments to help organizations manage their multi-cloud environments. For one, it’s easier to provision and manage resources, automate processes, and boost data security and regulatory compliance across the cloud ecosystem. Further, in combination with a sound FinOps strategy and toolkit, superclouds can help enterprises use their cloud resources more effectively and reduce costs by enabling them to analyze and control usage patterns and optimize costs. Ultimately, superclouds help reduce multi-cloud complexity, and that can boost operations and cloud value—which these days is what’s on the mind of nearly everyone in the C-suite.

Driving more value with cloud

The needs of each organization are unique, but the goal of driving more value from investments is not. With more options in the cloud technology market, companies can invest in digital transformation directly tied to their specific business goals. By selecting the most suitable cloud strategies—from sustainability to multi-cloud to superclouds—for their business needs, enterprises can leverage the benefits of various cloud service providers to garner more value from their cloud investments and speed their digital transformation. 

To discover more about how cloud sustainability can enhance cloud value, read this blog by David Linthicum.

To learn more about multi-cloud and reducing multi-cloud complexity, listen to this Deloitte On Cloud podcast.

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David Linthicum

David Linthicum

Managing Director | Chief Cloud Strategy Officer

As the chief cloud strategy officer for Deloitte Consulting LLP, David is responsible for building innovative technologies that help clients operate more efficiently while delivering strategies that enable them to disrupt their markets. David is widely respected as a visionary in cloud computing—he was recently named the number one cloud influencer in a report by Apollo Research. For more than 20 years, he has inspired corporations and start-ups to innovate and use resources more productively. As the author of more than 13 books and 5,000 articles, David’s thought leadership has appeared in InfoWorld, Wall Street Journal, Forbes, NPR, Gigaom, and Prior to joining Deloitte, David served as senior vice president at Cloud Technology Partners, where he grew the practice into a major force in the cloud computing market. Previously, he led Blue Mountain Labs, helping organizations find value in cloud and other emerging technologies. He is a graduate of George Mason University.