As we gear up to exhibit at IP EXPO Manchester April 26 – 27, I recently read with interest the results of the latest Cloud Industry Forum research survey into UK Cloud adoption. A couple of things jumped out at me, as they mirror the experience iland is having in the UK market:
Overall cloud adoption rate now stands at 88% and the rate of cloud adoption has increased by 83% since 2010 – we rarely speak with a customer that isn’t using some type of cloud service and that’s reflected in these results. The difference now is that, rather than taking an adhoc approach, companies of all sizes in the UK are taking a more strategic, planned approach to cloud adoption in recognition of its importance to business transformation.
67% of users expect to increase their adoption of cloud services over the coming year- again, this matches our experience – particularly for companies in highly regulated sectors such as Financial Services and Bio-tech/pharma that may have been slow to the cloud adoption trend. There is now growing realisation that higher levels of IT security and industry compliance can be achieved in the cloud than on-premises and new cloud use cases are emerging as a result.
There is a more significant increase in cloud adoption amongst small and public sector organisations – cloud security levels have come a long way and this, combined with the cost-effectiveness of cloud models, has attracted both small companies and public sector organisations to the cloud. Cloud-based disaster recovery solutions mean that even small and medium organisations can achieve a business continuity strategy previously only available to large enterprises. A great example of this is the East Thames public housing association who have kicked off their ‘cloud-first’ strategy with a successful DRaaS project.
70% of respondents are either currently seeing or anticipate seeing their organisation have a competitive advantage from utilising cloud services – we hear this again and again from our customers – the benefits of cloud adoption surpass their expectations and drive competitive advantage. Many iland customers have even discovered unexpected use cases from cloud services such as using DR cloud capacity for dev/test.
So, the survey results are encouraging and the only way is up for the UK cloud industry (just as long as we deal with that Brexit and GDPR issue – more on that in upcoming blogs and webinars!). However, I was surprised by one of the results that the survey uncovered about cloud migration:
“On average it took 15 months to migrate applications to the cloud, with 90% experiencing difficulties when migrating to a cloud solution,…”
The reasons given for these migration difficulties included complexity of migration (43%) and lack of internal skills/knowledge (32%). Clearly, more planning and expert assistance is needed up front to prepare for cloud migrations. After all, there are very few companies who can make either the monetary or time investment required to develop new cloud implementation and management skills and a partnership between the customer and cloud service provider based on mutual understanding of responsibilities needs to fill that gap. Indeed, as UK cloud adoption levels continue to rise, the complexity of cloud projects will only increase and a high-touch, consultative approach from cloud providers will become more important.