In the decade since cloud technology invaded the corporate data center, cloud solutions have delivered measurable success and have revolutionized business. Many challenges and fears have been navigated to bring us to this point in the cloud adoption cycle.
Cloud technology remains one of the most promising technologies as is a key enabler for future advances such as digital business, IoT, and Gartner's bimodal IT.
As cloud adoption matures, organizations are more effectively leveraging it for greater benefits, yet lingering struggles remain.
This is a two-part blog series examining trends highlighted in a global survey released by RightScale, a cloud management platform provider.
Part one examined the improving relationship between central IT and business units in implementing cloud technologies. This post discuss cloud maturity and the changing computing challenges and benefits.
Primary Cloud Computing Challenges
Security is No Longer the Top Cloud Challenge
Security was displaced as the primary challenge by all respondents. Concerns about cloud security has decreased from 47% in 2014 to only 37% in this year's survey.
The more cloud computing expertise organizations developed, the less concern they had about security. As cloud maturity and experience increased, those citing security challenges decreased to only 17%.
Lack of Resource is Cited as Primary Barrier
The primary cloud challenge, across all levels of expertise, is lack of resources. The lack of resources likely drives the other emerging challenges of cost control, management, compliance, and governance.
Cloud Cost Challenges Increase, But Optimization Efforts Lag
Cloud cost challenges is the fastest growing concern. In 2013 only 18% of respondents cited cost management as a significant challenge, this has increased to 26% or respondents in 2016.
Primary Cloud Benefits
The initial promise of cloud technology was costs savings, and many organizations in deed realized significant cost savings. Yet, as we have seen, many are struggling to optimize cloud computing costs.
The fastest growing benefits cited were faster access to infrastructure (62%) and faster time-to-market (52%). These percentages represent a significant increase over the last three years. In 2014 respondents cited benefits of faster infrastructure access and time-to-market to be 52% and 46% respectively.
Cloud Maturity Trends
RightScale defines several categories of cloud maturity.
- Cloud Beginners: new to cloud computing; working on proof-of-concepts or initial cloud
- Projects; gaining experience with cloud in order to determine future projects
- Cloud Explorers: multiple projects or applications already deployed in the cloud; focused on improving and expanding their use of cloud resources
- Cloud Focused: heavily using cloud infrastructure; focused on optimizing cloud operations and costs
According to RightScale, smaller organizations are more likely to be Cloud Focused while a larger portion of enterprise respondents are in the two most mature stages — Cloud Explorers and Cloud Focused.
This suggests that small companies that deployed cloud technology tend to make greater commitment to and investment in cloud computing. However, more large organizations overall have moved beyond initial cloud initiatives.
Maturity is key to reaping benefits and decreasing challenges, yet a primary challenges is obtaining the necessary resources to develop mature cloud initiatives. Therefore, it is significant that small business tend to move more quickly to cloud maturity especially considering that smaller organization may have even greater problems accessing resources.
This is where a consulting services firm such as CorpInfo can be helpful. We can help smaller organizations bring their infrastructure to maturity and we can assist larger global enterprises in developing and implementing a comprehensive cloud strategy.
CorpInfo also has proven expertise in helping organization optimize cloud infrastructure for cost efficiency, performance, and agility.