Archive for September, 2011

Has Your Organization Adopted a Cloud Migration Strategy?

There has been an increased amount of research lately that indicates that many organizations will move to the cloud in the short term, there isn’t a lot of information detailing who is using it now and what they are using it for.

A published study by CDW reported that a number of enterprises are actually unaware that they are already using cloud applications and have a limited cloud adoption strategy.

It must be noted though, that this does not mean these enterprises have no intention of moving to the cloud. It just means, that these enterprises have not yet approached cloud computing strategically, and have not implemented an organization wide adoption strategy.

Cloud Computing Strategies

Another interesting note, according to the CDW report, is the percentage of companies claiming to have an enterprise policy on the acclimation to cloud computing — only 38%. This comes as a surprise as the report also concludes that 84% of organizations have already installed, at the minimum, one cloud application.

In March 2011, more than 1,200 IT professionals were asked to answer surveys for the CDW 2011 Cloud Computing Tracking Poll, which drew some interesting conclusions. It was discovered that these enterprises are uneasy with using public clouds and would rather go through the private clouds.

Cloud Application Usage

However, it is necessary to examine these statistics again with more caution. As mentioned above, more than 84% of these organizations claim that they have, at the bare minimum, one cloud application, yet they still do not consider themselves as cloud users.

The reason behind this discrepancy has yet to be determined. In other words, organizations are still unclear as to if and how it can integrate with their current enterprise architecture.

This is emphasized by how only 42% of those surveyed being convinced that their operations and amenities have the ability to operate efficiently in the cloud. Statistics show that applications operated in the cloud most frequently are the following:

  • Commodity applications such as email (50% of cloud users)
  • File storage (39%)
  • Web and video conferencing (36% and 32%)
  • Online learning (34%)

Developing a Cloud Strategy

Eight industries that were surveyed as part of the CDW Cloud Computing Tracking Poll back in March 2011 were—small businesses, medium businesses, large businesses, the Federal government, State and Local governments, healthcare, higher education and K-12 public schools. The poll discovered conclusions specific to each of the eight industries. It also included 150 individuals from each industry who acknowledged themselves as knowledgeable with the current uses and future plans of cloud application usage within their respective organization.

Although there are various hurdles to consider prior to adoption, primarily they can be divided into four segments:

1. Adoption Strategy

Despite having a number as high as 84% of organizations using at least one cloud-based application, only 25% of them have an organization wide adoption strategy and recognize themselves as cloud users. Just over a third has a formal plan for cloud adoption.

2. ROI Considerations

Approximately 75% were noted to have cost reductions upon migrating applications to a cloud platform.

3. Security

One of the, if not the primary obstacle, holding both current and potential users back is security. However, quite a number of users, including those who are currently using cloud applications, have yet to realize the full potential of security applications available.

4. Future spending

It is necessary for organizations to discover what future hardware and software acquisitions can be migrated into a cloud ecosystem.

Cloud Computing Now

A lot can happen in five years—this is especially true for the cloud industry. Currently, this study does not discuss in depth the difference between cloud computing and SaaS. However, it is likely that SaaS could be included in the study as it did define cloud computing as a “model for enabling convenient, on-demand access to a shared pool of configurable computing resources.”

With this in mind, along with the recent Forrester research on IT spending, it is highly likely that the data CDW has outlined will be significantly different five years from now.

According to Forrester, a record number of organizations will be investing in SaaS technologies, which broadly, is a subset of cloud computing. The data includes a finding that 25% of enterprises examined have a adopted a new cloud technology this year, with 14% using IaaS, 8% using PaaS, and 6% using business-process-as-a-service.

Does Your Organization Have a Cloud Migration Strategy?

In the end, the research was able to provide some thought provoking data. It was able to show that many companies are already leveraging the cloud without even knowing it.

Regardless of the potential ROI and efficiency gains offered by cloud computing, a significant number of companies have yet to seize the opportunity to leverage the scalability and efficiency of modern cloud applications.

Aside from this, according to the research, many companies find themselves without a coherent company wide strategy for dealing with cloud adoption. This is important to note because it is no secret a lack of planning can lead to disastrous results—with results like these needing a lot of financial and organizational efforts to fix.

If your organization is one of those lacking a coherent and comprehensive cloud adoption strategy, contact the Cloud accelerator experts at Nubifer to help guide the way. Nubifer partners with the leading vendors in order to provide unbiased cloud application architecture diagrams, white papers, security and compliance risk analysis and migration consulting services.