A cloud-based future has long been on the horizon, but a surge in the uptake of cloud computing is now in full swing. So, what's driving this trend?
According to Oracle CEO Mark Hurd, this growth is being spurred by a desire from business to innovate at a low price point, and fast. In an age where imagination and access to technology are becoming the most significant limiting factors, it's essential to have scalable software to remain at innovation’s cutting edge. As continual system updates become less practical for budgets and timescales due to the increasing speed of progress, the cloud – specifically SaaS – is transforming from a nice-to-have solution to an essential next step.
The cloud has gone ‘mainstream’
The most obvious benefits of cloud adoption are already beginning to speak for themselves, as evidenced by increased uptake. Amazon and Microsoft are reaping the returns of cloud adoption, with the Amazon Web Services (AWS) division clocking up $2 billion in revenues in Q3 2015, while Microsoft stock prices are also on the up. An Economist Intelligence Unit, resulting from a global survey of 784 IT and business executives carried out earlier this year, also reveals that companies with a ‘mature approach’ to the cloud (large-scale adoption across their business model) are experiencing returns in growth.
While concerns about data security, privacy and legal compliance do still persist (32% of mature cloud adopters cite security as the main challenge to adoption over the next three years), the report concludes that the world of industry has reached a definitive tipping point, where "the benefits of cloud services outweigh the drawbacks".
A new role for the IT professional
The same Economist report found that the primary barrier among 'mature' cloud adopters is cultural resistance. This is seen mostly within IT departments, reflective of the cloud’s direct impact on job descriptions for individuals in this sector: it requires "new technical skills and a more collaborative approach". With the growing need to keep pace with innovation, this push-back has a limited shelf life. In fact, adopters are already beginning to see improvements in the business-IT relationship and overall culture following cloud uptake. The most commonly cited improvement, identified by 44% of the sample, was that "employees use technology more readily", followed by "the pace of work is faster" (39%) and "employees are more empowered" (31%).
FLufthansa CIO Roland Schütz, cited in the report, is clear that cloud services are essential for the airline to innovate and collaborate with multiple partners to offer customers seamlessly integrated services
Airlines will not be able to provide all the relevant services on their own... We have founded an innovation hub in Berlin which is funding start-ups and is working on new third-party business models. This is only possible via cloud. The cloud is really removing barriers for us in collaborating beyond the boundaries of our enterprise.
censhare is enabling businesses to efficiently manage their data, content creation and multi-channel marketing capabilities in one accessible hub. censhare offers a Cloud model, teamed up with Amazon Web Services, and SaaS which runs in certified and security tested data centres in Germany, both with the ability for customers to scale flexibly for low monthly costs. Explore our Operate solutions to find out more.