The state of play in Cloud in 2016
A look at Cloud adoption and the roadblocks stopping key decision makers from that first step
The Cloud marketplace has evolved rapidly in recent times, with businesses having a range of options suitable for meeting a series of different business needs. From Private Cloud for organisations with specific visibility, regulatory and compliance obligations, to organisations looking at different Public Cloud platforms and leveraging its flexibility, innovative possibilities and next generation services. Beginning our Microsoft Azure series, let’s examine the state of play in Cloud in 2016, look at why and how organisations are using Public Cloud and the obstacles that hinder key business decision makers from taking that first step.
The popularity of Public Cloud
A good place to start when examining the Cloud landscape in 2016 is RightScale’s State of the Cloud 2016 Report. Respondents to RightScale’s survey had 95% of people using ‘Any Cloud’ with that figure dropping only ever so slightly to 89% using ‘Public Cloud.’ The interesting thing is that in 2014, that figure was at 94% of people surveyed using Cloud with 87% of respondents either using ‘Public Cloud only’ or a Hybrid Cloud environment. So we can see that by 2014, Cloud adoption was already widespread and that growth has been incremental since then.
Organisations looking to Azure
In an Australia/New Zealand context, Azure is a relative newcomer to the Cloud marketplace. Launched in Australia in October 2014 with two local data centres, Azure has had to rapidly make up ground on entrenched Cloud platforms, both Public and Private. Expanding our scope to an Asia-Pacific (APAC) perspective, 78% of organisations have said that Azure forms part of their overall Cloud strategy.
Taking action with Azure
Interestingly, many organisations in APAC have yet to actually take that next step and evaluate and then implement Azure. This figure is led by businesses in the financial services, energy and utilities and retail verticals. These three verticals have a common factor, that being they are customer-facing industries, where the innovative possibilities of Public Cloud can help their organisations solve business problems and drive a better overall customer experience.
What holds organisations back from acting?
For the organisations that have yet to adopt Cloud, the handful of reasons hindering uptake are worth exploring further.
The top obstacles to Cloud adoption are:
- Fear of security breaches
- Issues with data sovereignty
- Lack of integration
- Lack of a clear Cloud strategy
- Lack of agility in the business
- Finding the right partner
What’s interesting about these concerns is that apart from security, the most common reasons are Cloud integration strategy, business agility and having a partner. This tells us that once organisations overcome their security concerns, the issue is not really knowing what to do next. And that makes perfect sense. Adopting a Cloud platform such as Azure is a significant strategic and organisational initiative. It requires a level of expertise and technical knowledge that many organisations lack internally. It underlines that for many organisations, not having the answers in your team puts the brakes on using Cloud.
Those concerns and the rates of evaluation and uptake of Azure make sense in an A/NZ context, because it is still a relatively new offering. It’s worth remembering that it’s been available for just two years now and adopting Cloud is a significant business project. In the following blogs in this series, we’ll dig deeper into what is Azure and explore the possibilities it offers organisations.
Part 1 in our Microsoft Azure blog series.