Organisations are generally optimistic about the Cloud improving their business, but less than half have seen that optimism realised according to a recent survey by Symantec.
Entitled 2011 State of Cloud Survey, it examined the ways organisations are transitioning into the Cloud and found that 88 per cent of businesses felt that the Cloud will improve their IT agility, but only 47 per cent said that it did.
Symantec Pacific director of specialist solutions, Sean Kopelke, attributes this result to many of the IT projects carried out by businesses not meeting the expectations that they start off with, whether it is Cloud or other technologies
“Sometimes the reality is not as close as the expectations thought of at the start,” he said.
Despite that, Kopelke adds that out of all the organisations that Symantec spoke to for the survey “over half realised their goal at the end of the project, which is not bad".
The significant gap between the expectations of organisations and reality of Cloud deployment can be attributed to a couple of different areas, with the main sticking point being lack of experience.
“There are a lot of organisations that may not have embarked on a Cloud project beforehand or built the infrastructure within their organisation before, so the expectations that they have set for themselves were not based on experience in many cases,” Kopelke said.
“As a result, they weren’t really sure what they were meant to get out of it.”
Kopelke went on to say that a lot of organisations expected a cost reduction or efficiencies in that space, but only about half of the organisations felt they were realising those goals.
This had caused a gap between the two.
“I think it has a lot to do with the maturity of that whole space and market,” he said.
“As people do more and more Cloud projects, or build more infrastructure-as-a-service inside their organisation and private Clouds, or move to external channel or service providers to provide for them as well, they’ll have more experience with existing projects and set their expectations a bit better.”
Another observation that came out of the survey was that security in the Cloud is both a top goal and a concern for IT.
“The interesting point for us was organisations still saying that they see security as a large concern as they move into a Cloud environment and what future benefits can come out of that,” Kopelke said.
“That is because they feel they are moving a service or a stack of applications to a channel service provider that has a lot deeper skills in that space, so therefore it can potentially enhance the security environment for them as well.”
Other key findings in the survey was that IT staff are not fully ready for the move to Cloud and few organizations have not completed their Cloud migration despite high enthusiasm for the technology.