Finding a managed services provider to take care of your clouds Posted on March 21, 2019 by Tim Burke If your organization uses cloud services, you’re probably in need of cloud management — and for that you’ll likely end up turning to a managed services provider. As you do, beware those with limited focus (e.g., supporting just one type of cloud ecosystem). I believe you’re better helped by a provider able to manage hybrid multi-cloud environments, including both public and private clouds as well as data center resources. Look for a managed services provider that… Understands hybrid multi-cloud strategy Your provider should be able to help you create a strategy driving effective enterprise-wide cloud policy and governance practices that ease management, maintenance, and compliance efforts. A managed services provider able to do this should have extensive cloud management credentials and seek to learn the intricacies of your business in order to optimally integrate and orchestrate your various cloud services and other IT infrastructure elements. Can consistently apply a unified platform/model across hybrid multi-cloud infrastructures Rather than implement multiple cloud models, you’re better off turning to a managed services provider with the leading-edge technical skills and tools needed to deliver a single view of all cloud resources that unifies your various cloud and non-cloud environments into a single platform or operating model. Such a unified environment is easier to monitor, manage, and keep secure. Will customize to meet your needs In addition to the talent, tools, and comprehensive services necessary for delivering on your long-term cloud strategy, your provider must also understand where it can best add value by affordably customizing capabilities to meet your particular requirements — without adding complexity and limiting your future options. Can constantly monitor and manage your infrastructure To ensure that there are always eyes on your IT infrastructure, pick a provider that can monitor, alert, and manage activity across all your clouds as well as the rest of your environment and gives you access to a multi-disciplinary team of consultants, project managers, designers, engineers, and product specialists when you need them. Has deep security experience Though public clouds have long been regarded as more secure than many private data centers, increasing cloud complexity requires enhanced cloud security, since each additional feature can create a new potential attack surface. So it’s important that you make sure the cloud managed services provider you choose is “secure from the start” by being able to accommodate new cloud services with less risk thanks to real-time discovery, frequent threat scanning, active alerting, and immediate remediation. Is flexible As your business needs change, your IT infrastructure — including your cloud environments — should be able to adapt accordingly. Make sure you choose a cloud-savvy managed services provider with the ability to quickly and efficiently adjust the services it provides you.