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VMware CTO on Architecting a Cloud

According to VMware CTO Greg Lavender, there are four key steps that architects and senior IT leaders should take to experience the efficiency, agility and responsiveness that’s possible with multi-cloud.   

Realizing Value When Architecting Your Multi-Cloud Strategy

VMware CTO Greg Lavender recently wrote a useful blog on how to get started on a multi-cloud architecture. If anyone knows what it means to build a cloud, it’s Greg. Before coming to VMware, he spent six years at Citigroup as the CTO of Cloud Architecture and Technology Engineering. At Citi, he built a global private cloud that operated across almost two dozen data centers, supported multiple business units and was available in more than half the number of countries that make up the United Nations. An impressive achievement, to say the least.

Here, I summarize the key findings and observations in Greg’s blog. His practical and actionable guidance is certain to add value for anyone planning a move to multi-cloud. 


A step-by-step strategy

In his blog, Greg lays out four steps for planning and executing a successful multi-cloud strategy:

  1. Define the basic building blocks of your cloud – This architecture should address the needs of both your existing apps and those you expect to deliver in the future.
  2. Embrace four key strategic cloud principles – Consciously architect the trade-offs across the four cloud levers of speed, cost, scale and security.
  3. Move up the business value chain – Broaden your focus beyond just infrastructure to understand the core processes surrounding applications.
  4. Have the right conversations with key stakeholders – Cloud initiatives touch many teams, so it’s important to actively manage the change needed in culture, core processes and technology.


Cloud is much more than IaaS

Greg’s discussion around the business value chain is particularly insightful. As the graphic below shows, you can build business value step-by step – starting with IaaS and infrastructure operations, and then moving through various offerings as a service, namely PaaS/CaaS, FaaS and DevOps, then DaaS and Data Ops, SaaS and SaaS Ops. Business and technology alignment sit at the highest end of the value chain, delivering new efficiency, agility and responsiveness. 

As Greg points out, most IT leaders focus on the left side of the equation, but the real wins are realized when you address the right side of the continuum. 

I encourage anyone considering a multi-cloud project to  read Greg’s blog. It’s a quick read, but it speaks to some critically important concepts that will help you execute a successful multi-cloud strategy. 


Learn more

Looking to better understand VMware’s unique approach to multi-cloud architecture? Get the definitive guide here.
To learn about how VMware is helping organizations address multi-cloud requirements, visit the Cloud Solutions page on
Another good multi-cloud resource is
Architect Central, featuring blogs written for architects responsible for building out cloud environments. 



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