Azure Security & Compliance could be the big winners from your cloud optimisation plan

February 11 2022, by Macquarie Telecom Group | Category: Cloud Services

Look beyond the dollars and you’ll find a host of additional benefits that can accrue from cloud optimisation programs.

Too many organisations take an “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” approach to their Azure cloud, even if there are potential cost savings – fee reductions of around 26% are typical. If the cost savings alone aren’t enough to prompt you into action, this round-up should be enough to push a Cloud Optimisation program to the top of your to-do list.

1. Security risks: hard to lock down, even harder to keep up with.

Addressing cloud security really needs to be thought of as an ongoing exercise  – it’s simply not sufficient to put systems in place from the start and hope they will provide ongoing protection. In fact, bad actors are counting on businesses ‘running out of energy’ or losing focus when it comes to security.

To-do: ensure your cloud optimisation strategy also factors in constant security reviews and upgrades. 

2. Time savings: don’t be a slave to someone else’s clock.

As internal IT resources become increasingly stretched, many organisations also find their teams need to study up on the specific technology, then get up to speed with your specific instance before attempting an optimisation. Not only does this chew up valuable time, but it also diverts your team’s attention away from more pressing tasks and productive strategies.

 To-do: ensure you’ve aligned your support resources to peak demand times; use external expertise to keep your own team focussed and productive. 

3. Read the fine print: managing compliance and regulatory risks

When organisations are less than 100% certain about their data obligations –  particularly in regards to GDPR, CIS, NIST, APRA, PCI, HIPPA and other authorities – the default response can be to overlook some of the more detailed requirements.

We often find that a cloud optimisation process highlights regulations and compliance that aren’t factored in at all. This is especially true in the more heavily-regulated industries, businesses that collect and hold large quantities of customer data or organisations that operate in multiple legal jurisdictions or geographic territories.

To-do: use the risk mitigation frameworks of a Cloud Optimisation program to go beyond efficiencies and re-assess which areas of compliance need further work. 

4. Who’s risk is it anyway? Get clear on shared responsibilities.

While there’s often the assumption that your cloud provider will take care of governance, this is rarely the case. The way your business configures, manages, consumes and secures your Azure cloud is largely up to you, and for you to assume that your cloud provider will automatically keep you protected is simply asking for trouble.

To-do: get back to basics and re-assess the SLAs and Shared responsibility model of your cloud provider to ensure that all your operating assumptions are correct. 

5. It happens every Friday afternoon: reducing Talent Risk to ensure continuity.

Cloud optimisation is often managed by a handful of IT managers. When these people leave the company – sometimes during a critical busy period or perhaps for good – they often take their Azure IP with them.

An industry-wide IT skills shortage could be leaving you in a situation where your critical cloud infrastructure is being managed a ‘revolving door’ of newcomers, who may bring mistakes with them.

To-do: take a look at the IP required to support your Azure environment and make a plan to de-risk individuals to a more accountable contract with an expert technology partner. 

It’s not just the money: Talk to us about saving dollars and making sense.

Less risk, better governance, reduced response times and a clearer picture of your critical infrastructure. And if none of these reasons is compelling enough, you could always just sit back and take the credit for a 26% cost reduction.

If you’re looking to get started on Cloud Optimisation, Macquarie Cloud Services have developed a self-service assessment tool for your Azure environment called Macquarie Lens. It takes less than ten minutes to complete and lets you customise the parameters of the performance and security audit across your Azure services architecture.

To understand in full what benefits you can enjoy by optimising your Azure environment download our latest e-guide here.