A recent study of UK SME’s discovered that 14% of the companies surveyed found that having a formal Cloud strategy is non essential, while 51% admitted to having no cloud strategy at all! With the recent news that BP, a 225 billion dollar company, has decided to axe its internal “hybrid” Cloud program and instead shift all workloads to the public Cloud, this is a major statement by the international and massively diversified business that embracing Cloud technology is crucial to the effective running of their business, now and in to the future.
Comprehending the scale of the road that lies ahead for them genuinely makes my head hurt, but it’s interesting to see a major organisation invest time and effort into a program only to instantly drop it, in favour of a faster, cheaper and more agile alternative.
It still surprises me that a significant percentage of the people I speak to are yet to fully embrace Cloud technology. Whether it’s simple VoIP hosting or cloud storage right the way to sales, marketing or accounting cloud solutions – there is still some resistance. Why? I can only make assumptions…
I believe the reasons to be:
- Fear of the new;
- Potential exposure;
Embrace the new
Given the rapidly changing world around us, businesses will have to invest in Cloud technology to better understand their customer’s wants and needs. Successfully reacting to changes in customer behaviour could only previously be done with large scale human analysis of raw data, markets, trends etc.… or instinct!
Now, algorithms can process raw Data in milliseconds.
Trying to hide poor or “status quo” performance will only buy you a few more years and it’s only a matter of time before digital disruption and Cloud strategy are phrases consigned to the annals of time.
Costs are proven to be cheaper for Cloud solutions vs On Premise, so costs are realistically not a barrier (despite what people say)… and the fact that automatic upgrades are carried out (sometimes daily), updating systems to latest versions becomes again, even less costly…. And that also rules out Time, as the implementation time gap between Cloud vs on site solutions is massive once again, especially in situations where businesses have dozens of sites in different countries/continents.
Now, this is the hard sell! Only recently in Ireland, our national Telecoms provider, Eir, realised they had suffered a security breach in their modems… And how did they find out?… By reading about it online. But that’s another story…
So, yes, security is definitely an issue. And given the high profile hacks that have taken place the last few years, this shows that even the biggest players like Sony, Yahoo or LinkedIn can succumb to online threats. That being said, the continuous work that goes into ensuring Cloud security, for the most parts, means that the hackers are still a few steps behind their targets. In fact, global SaaS CRM giant Salesforce have a yearly competition where they allocate a prize of $1 million to anyone who can hack into their system, identifying any potential holes or weaknesses. This also means that those with the ability to hack their system, could end up working for them.
In summary, this article may seem counter intuitive to some, but those who don’t see themselves as being in a race to the cloud….will probably come last.