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Cloud Enablement for Google Cloud

Austin Fuller

8 min read

Last updated on May 17th, 2023 at 1:42pm

Introduction

As businesses continue to embrace the era of digital transformation, leveraging the unique strengths and opportunities provided by each cloud provider is becoming increasingly important for organizations seeking to optimize their cloud strategy and maximize the benefits derived from the cloud ecosystem.

Adding Google Cloud to an existing AWS or Azure setup can be a strategic move for many organizations, as it enables them to take advantage of the unique offerings that Google Cloud brings to the table. For instance, their Kubernetes Engine is renowned for its ease of use and seamless integration, providing superior container orchestration capabilities. Similarly, Google's BigQuery service stands out as a powerful and scalable data warehouse solution that simplifies the process of analyzing large datasets in real-time.

Google Cloud Enablement represents the process of adopting and integrating Google Cloud Platform (GCP) services into an organization's existing cloud infrastructure, particularly when that organization has already established a presence in other cloud environments, such as Amazon Web Services (AWS) or Microsoft Azure.

However, integrating Google Cloud into an existing cloud environment is not without challenges. Organizations must carefully consider factors such as security and compliance, as well as how different services from different cloud providers will interact and the potential for duplicated effort in managing multiple cloud platforms.

To minimize these challenges, organizations should consider investing in a cloud management platform as an effective solution for harmonizing and optimizing the use of multiple public cloud providers. These platforms typically offer features such as financial management, automation & orchestration, and continuous compliance, ensuring that organizations can efficiently manage and make the most of their multi-cloud infrastructure.

Challenges to Google Cloud Enablement

If not properly addressed, multi-cloud can be a strain on operational processes, making completing tasks in the cloud more difficult despite the new technologies and capabilities it brings. Automation is needed to eliminate the duplicate effort and create one streamlined experience.

Requesting and Configuring Cloud Accounts

One area is the process of requisitioning and provisioning a new cloud account. Without a single platform to standardize the process for requesting new cloud accounts, users face several challenges. One of the primary issues is inconsistent processes. Different cloud providers have distinct account creation processes, which can mean a different provisioning workflow for each cloud provider. Users might struggle to follow the varying steps, leading to mistakes, misconfigurations, or delays in account setup. This can ultimately slow down project deployments and hinder productivity.

Getting Visibility Into Accounts Across Clouds

It is also difficult to gain an overview of cloud accounts and resources across multiple providers. This can lead to challenges in tracking usage, optimizing costs, and ensuring compliance with organizational policies. The absence of a unified platform may also result in an increased administrative burden on IT administrators. Managing accounts and permissions across multiple cloud providers can be complex and time-consuming, leading to errors, misconfigurations, or security gaps.

Enforcing Consistent Security and Compliance Policies

Non-compliance and security risks pose another significant challenge. When cloud accounts are created and managed independently across different providers, it becomes increasingly difficult to enforce consistent security and compliance policies. This increases the risk of vulnerabilities, data breaches, and non-compliance with regulatory requirements.

Lastly, integration challenges may arise without a standardized platform. Integrating cloud accounts with existing IT service management (ITSM) tools, identity providers, and other third-party applications can be more complex, which may limit the benefits of such integrations.

These challenges are important considerations that need to be accounted for when deciding on how to add multiple cloud providers like Google Cloud.

Automation & Orchestration

Managing multiple cloud environments can be complex and challenging. In this context, it is vital to standardize and automate the account provisioning process, have a single control plane for policies, permissions, and management, integrate with ITSM tools, provide greater visibility and control, and ensure a holistic view of the entire cloud estate. This will ensure that the multi-cloud environment benefits the organization instead of hindering it.

Standardizing the account provisioning process is essential for multi-cloud environments to ensure consistency and reduce the likelihood of misconfigurations. It also allows the organization to reach a larger scale of cloud adoption which can bring benefits that exceed the increased demand and complexity that multi-cloud environments bring. A standardized process not only simplifies the onboarding of new users but also promotes adherence to organizational policies. This, in turn, minimizes the risk of security vulnerabilities and non-compliance issues.

A Single Control Plane for Google Cloud and Beyond

Having a single control plane between cloud providers is crucial for effective management of policies, permissions, and identities. By centralizing these aspects, organizations can enforce security and compliance policies across all cloud accounts, regardless of the provider. This approach also streamlines administration by allowing IT administrators to manage user access, roles, and permissions from a single interface, reducing the risk of errors or misconfigurations. It also gives these same users a single place to access everything their multi-cloud environment can offer. This gives users faster access to what they need inside any cloud provider, allowing them to accomplish more and work more efficiently.

An Integrated Account Requisition Process

Integration with ITSM tools is essential for creating a seamless account request and approval workflow.

“ For a large-scale, multi-cloud, multi-account architecture to be successful, organizations need to have a single workflow for every type of cloud account. ”

This ensures that cross-functional teams and stakeholders in IT, finance, and other departments are involved in the decision-making and approval process and that nothing gets overlooked. By automating the request, configuration, and vending process, organizations can reduce the time it takes to provision new accounts and improve overall efficiency. Moreover, integrating with existing tools helps to consolidate processes and create a more streamlined user experience, reducing the complexity of managing multiple cloud environments.

Visibility and Control Across Clouds

Greater visibility and control across cloud providers are critical for effective multi-cloud management. A centralized view of the organization's cloud footprint makes it easier to track and manage resources, costs, and compliance across AWS, Azure, and Google Cloud. This enhanced visibility facilitates more informed decision-making and resource optimization, ensuring that organizations fully realize the benefits of their multi-cloud environment.

A holistic view of the entire cloud estate is essential for organizations to stay agile and responsive to the evolving needs of their business. By providing a single platform for all their cloud providers, organizations can better understand their cloud infrastructure, identify dependencies, and plan for future growth. This comprehensive perspective allows businesses to make strategic decisions about their cloud investments, ensuring that they have the right mix of services and resources to meet their objectives.

Financial Management

Google Cloud uses a concept known as billing accounts and allows an unlimited number of these to be created per Google Cloud organization. As the environment scales, it becomes increasingly difficult to track and manage costs effectively. The native tools provided by Google Cloud may not be sufficient to provide a comprehensive view of your spending, making it challenging to adhere to budgets and maintain control over your Google Cloud costs.

A fully enabled cloud will unify costs not only from every billing account in Google Cloud, but also across the cloud accounts of other cloud providers. This also includes the attribution of multi-cloud costs back to internal cost centers. This enables organizations to allocate resources more efficiently, hold departments accountable for their cloud usage, and make data-driven decisions about resource allocation.

Kion and Google Cloud Enablement

Kion is the “Front Door” for multi-cloud, multi-account environments looking to add Google Cloud alongside AWS or Azure. Kion’s unified approach to multi-cloud account provisioning reduces the administrative burden associated with managing multiple cloud environments. IT administrators can manage user access, roles, and permissions from a single interface, streamlining the process and reducing the risk of errors or misconfigurations.

With a unified platform, users no longer need to navigate multiple vendor-specific interfaces to access the native cloud provider consoles. Users can federate into each cloud provider and assume their specific roles and privileges all from within Kion. It also consolidates into one what is likely multiple processes to request new cloud accounts. Kion streamlines the process by automating the request, configuration, and vending process, reducing the time it takes to provision new accounts and improving overall efficiency.

Kion integrates with existing IT service management (ITSM) tools, identity providers, and other third-party applications, providing a seamless experience for users and administrators. This simplifies the management of accounts and resources across multiple cloud environments and ensures that Kion fits well within the organization's existing infrastructure.

Kion also aggregates and allocates spending not only from any number of billing accounts within Google Cloud organizations but also from AWS and Azure. This gives you a holistic understanding of your spending for a given project or department to better understand your spend and make prudent decisions, even if you have scaled your environment to a large number of accounts.

You can see how Kion can transform how you work across clouds or make it possible for you to seamlessly add Google Cloud to your environment by requesting a demo or trying Kion risk free in your environment for 30 days.

About the Author

Austin Fuller

Austin has nearly a decade of experience in enterprise software and cybersecurity and is an AWS-certified cloud practitioner.

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