As cloud computing makes steady headway with more and more companies shifting their applications and computing infrastructure to the cloud, it has paved the way for a sudden acceleration in the pace of cloud adoption. A recent IDG Enterprise survey of 925 IT decision makers found that companies, “have moved 45% of their applications and computing infrastructure to the cloud already, and they expect well over half of their IT environment to be cloud-based by 2018.”

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The key drivers behind cloud adoption

A survey by management consulting group McKinsey & Co found that while 77% companies still used traditional IT infrastructure in 2015, the number will drop to 48% in 2018 as more companies will adopt cloud environment. The survey states, “Enterprises are planning to transition IT workloads at a significant rate and pace to a hybrid cloud infrastructure, with off-premise environments seeing the greatest growth in adoption.”

In another survey by IDG Enterprise, it was seen that, “Currently, the average company has 45% of its IT environment in the cloud, with 23% in private cloud, 15% in public cloud, and 7% in hybrid cloud. By the end of 2017, though, the average company expects to have moved 59% of the IT environment to the cloud: 28% in private cloud, 22% in public cloud, and 10% in hybrid cloud.” Given the pace of cloud adoption, the four key drivers are:

  • Lower total cost of ownership
  • Replacing on-premise legacy systems
  • Enabling business continuity
  • Speed of development

Accelerated cloud adoption

The sudden acceleration in movement to the cloud is getting a boost from the technological evolutions and innovations taking place in the cloud computing world. This shift is clearly illustrated in a survey of 50 large companies around the world by McKinsey & Co. which paints a bright future for cloud computing, “Given that large and midsize enterprises form the majority of revenue and profits for the traditional enterprise IT industry, the rate and pace of this shift portends greater headwinds for on-premise IT vendors. At the same time, this transition means larger gains lie ahead for cloud-service providers of off-premise cloud infrastructure services.”

Cloud adoption could be critical to business success

A strategic move by many big organizations to benefit from the business agility, flexibility, scalability, risk mitigation and ROI offered by a move to the cloud, the degree of cloud adoption varies from company to company. But what is undeniable is the steady pace at which both large and small enterprises are making the shift. In a way, cloud adoption has become critical to an enterprise’s success due to the following factors:

Practical – A growing business must prioritize and optimize its expenses and resources. A cloud-based solution eliminated the cost and the pain of maintaining expensive on-premise infrastructure.

Scalable – Unlike the limited scalability of on-premise infrastructure, a cloud ecosystem can be scaled up and down to meet business requirements.

Predictable – Performance metrics forecasting is the key to enterprise growth. A move to the cloud allows a business to frequently evaluate its operations, make improvements, plan and budget expenses to meet and exceed business goals.

How to choose the right cloud model or service

Depending on the size of the business, IT and available resources, companies are can choose between the three major cloud computing models and services:

Cloud Computing Models:

Public cloud – The apps and data is delivered from a local data centre (on-premise) to internal users
Private cloud – A third-party cloud provider stores the data in its remote servers and delivers it over internet
Hybrid cloud – A combination of both where business-critical data is stored in the local data centre while scalable services are delivered over the public cloud

Cloud Computing Service Categories:

Infrastructure as a service (IaaS) – Optimized virtual server and data storage along with the application program interfaces (APIs)
Platform as a service (PaaS) – Hosted development tools for general software development
Software as a service (SaaS) – Software applications or web services are delivered over the net accessible from anywhere using any internet-enabled device

Why are companies holding back from 100% cloud adoption?

While cloud computing offers the benefit of scalability, flexibility and predictability, there are certain security and compliance concerns. Here is a comparison of the major concern in all three models:

Public cloud

 Private cloud

 Hybrid cloud

Where is the data stored?

Security of the stored data

Vendor lock-in

Vendor lock-in

Lack of expertise

Security of the stored data

Security of the stored data

Where is the data stored?

Lack of expertise