I recently had a chance to read a Sandhill.com report titled Leaders In The Cloud. It is a pretty comprehensive report analyzing the business value of cloud computing for both customers and vendors. This report has a quantitative survey of IT executives from businesses of all sizes and shapes. Anyone wanting to understand the cloud adoption trends will find this report interesting. Top IT managers in enterprises will find this report useful while devising their cloud strategy. For me, this report gave me a clue about the short term trends among the enterprises.
- The biggest reasons for various organizations moving to cloud is the business agility, more than the cost efficiency cloud offers. For me, this shows the mindset of the enterprises clearly and the short to mid term strategy for them is to move to private clouds/hybrid clouds. Even though private clouds don’t offer the kind of cost efficiencies public clouds offer, they do allow the enterprises to be more efficient and agile much like the public clouds.
- Another interesting takeaway from their survey is that only 15% of the companies said a categorical no on their cloud plans. A whopping 60% said a categorical yes. This is a perfect validation for the claims that the cloud is real and it is here to stay.
- According to the survey SaaS is the widely used cloud service model now and it will continue to be that way 3 years from now. Even though the infrastructure use comes a distant second, PaaS has a higher adoption rate in the next 3 years. Even though I expect a higher number than their survey indicates, the trend is consistent with my argument that PaaS Is The Future Of Cloud Services.
- The survey shows that the significant use of SaaS is in the area of collaboration followed by CRM. This is a trend I have been observing in my talks with businesses from different parts of the world. In my opinion, cloud has the necessary DNA for collaboration.
- The biggest barrier to entry for large enterprises is data privacy and governance.
The survey results clearly hints towards one thing. Enterprises are not going to adopt public clouds in full vigor in the next 3-5 years. They are going to take a private -> hybrid route to the ultimate cloud nirvana. Unless, we see significant advances in cloud security and strong SLAs, the days of enterprise adoption of public clouds are very far away.
This report has lot of interesting numbers which could help enterprise managers nail down their cloud strategy. It is more focussed on the business side of the game than the technological side. It will be interesting to see how the industry evolves in the next 3 years. This report and many other reports in this area clearly point out to a short to mid term future with a hybrid cloud strategy inside the enterprises and we are already seeing the market going in that direction.