Multi Cloud is a source of joys and sorrows for retail companies

Research by Dynatrace highlights the difficulties of CIO and IT managers in the sector in monitoring an infrastructure that has become too complex. Published on 22 April 2022 by Redazione

Multi Cloud, that is, the combined use of multiple infrastructures, platforms and "as-a-service" software, is establishing itself as the preferred route for companies in many sectors, considering its advantages in terms of costs, flexibility and choice. But it is not a road without obstacles, first of all the excessive technological complexity, which translates into management complexity. A problem that also afflicts the retail sector, as emerged from the latest international study by Dynatrace, carried out by Coleman Parkes interviewing 130 CIOs and senior IT professionals, with infrastructure management responsibilities, of large companies in the sector (with over a thousand employees ).

We know how much technology, and in particular software applications, are essential for retail realities, in a context increasingly oriented to guaranteeing the customer or user rich, personalized and consistent experiences across all channels (the so-called omnichannel). But it happens that IT teams are inundated with data and forced to waste time on manual and routine activities of monitoring cloud environments. Among the companies in the sample, 99% have adopted a multi cloud environment to keep pace with digital transformation, and the average is six different cloud solutions "per capita''. For 64% of respondents, the proliferation of IT tools makes it difficult to optimize the infrastructure.

Another problem related to excessive complexity is the lack of visibility on what happens on the infrastructure itself, on any inefficiencies, failures and areas for improvement. In six out of ten cases in multi cloud environments, there are blind spots that make monitoring difficult. Conversely, 91% of IT managers would like to have better visibility and a greater understanding of the impact of technology (infrastructure) investments on revenue growth.

To gain visibility and control, however, you need automated solutions, unless you want to hire more staff to dedicate only to these routine, manual tasks. 63% of retailers say that, in light of multi-cloud, traditional infrastructure monitoring solutions are no longer adequate; 60% also take too much time and energy away from IT staff, who are forced to switch from one solution and one dashboard to another to obtain detailed information.

These manual and routine activities also take away a considerable slice of time (42%) of the working day, with a significant waste of productivity and delays in innovation. So 63% of retail IT managers would like to replace this with a platform that can provide end-to-end visibility into multi cloud environments. However, it should be emphasized that there is a non-negligible slice, about 40%, of IT professionals who would rather remain in the current situation, perhaps to avoid having to face major changes (but the study does not provide particular details on this).

“Today's consumers expect retailers to offer a steady stream of new digital services that create smoother and more engaging shopping experiences,” said Emanuele Cagnola, Dynatrace regional director Italy. "There is more pressure than ever to keep up with emerging trends and keep competitors at bay in a notoriously fast-paced industry. Multicloud architectures have been instrumental in enabling retailers to keep up with these demands, providing the agility they need to innovate faster. However, teams are struggling to manage the complexity these multi cloud environments entail, which is taking time that could be better spent driving digital transformation and finding new ways to meet evolving customer needs. "

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