Expectations On Cloud Computing Have Changed

Investment company North Bridge recently collaborated with analyst firm Wikibon to conduct a large scale global survey to gauge the sentiments of IT users and buyers towards cloud computing. No surprise that cloud adoption in the enterprise is on the rise but expectations and approaches towards the cloud has shifted, according to the survey findings.

Cloud computing image from Shutterstock

From the results of the global survey, businesses are less preoccupied with actually moving to the cloud and are now focusing on how to use cloud services. For example, in 2011, key concerns with cloud computing were around reliability and interoperability. Now, it's about dealing with security, regulation, privacy and vendor lock-in. Concerns over the cost of deploying cloud solutions has also tripled in the last five years which shows that financial departments within organisations are looking at cloud usage more closely.

As a result, people are expecting more out of deploying cloud services. Take software-as-a-service (SaaS), which is now the most pervasive type of cloud service in organisations. Nearly 80 per cent of company expect to see a return on investment (ROI) in as little as three months. That figure is 58 per cent for platform-as-a-service (PaaS).

Businesses are becoming savvier when shopping around for cloud solutions as well. Around 75 per cent of SaaS adopters use more than one vendor, with a majority of them citing the reason for doing so is to take advantage of the strengths from different providers.

As expected, the survey indicated a growth in hybrid cloud adoption. According to Wikibon senior cloud analyst Brian Gracely:

"Deploying to public cloud and hybrid cloud are no longer ‘if’ questions, but ‘when'. Wikibon forecasts that over the next 10 years, hybrid cloud will be the predominant model which will include one-third of IT spending on public cloud."

Surprisingly, innovation and monetary savings is now cited less as a motivator for businesses to take on the cloud. The surveyed showed organisations valued scalability and agility that cloud solutions offer more than the innovation capabilities and cost savings they bring.

If you're one of the companies lagging behind when it comes to moving to the cloud and don't know where to start, analyst firm Gartner has proposed the following three steps to jump-start your cloud strategy:

  • Adopt an outcome perspective. Figure out what you want out of any given cloud product rather than looking at installing a set of technologies all in one go. Start small.
  • Define your guiding principles for cloud adoption.
  • Determine your measure of success.

Have you noticed a change in attitude towards cloud computing within your own organisation? Let us know in the comments.


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