CIOs Embrace Cloud, But …

Cloud Computing

More than two-thirds of European IT professionals say cloud computing as a priority today, but familiar challenges are hindering take up.

Around 45 per cent say security is a barrier to adoption and 40 per cent are wary of being locked into a single provider. These familiar and almost depressing findings are from research by the data centre operator Interxion, which polled responses from IT decision makers and influencers at 292 companies in 11 European countries.

The figures relating to cloud’s importance are broadly similar across large, medium and small enterprises, Interxion discovered with around 75% of those polled saying they either currently use or plan to use cloud computing in the next 2 years.

Key factors in driving cloud computing investment are reduction of infrastructure costs, the ability to grow while reducing resources, greater scalability and the ability to perform better backup and disaster recovery.

Cloud Housing

Almost 50 per cent of respondents expect more than 50 per cent of their IT will be delivered from the cloud within a similar timeframe 25 per cent expect more than 75 per cent of their IT to be housed in the cloud.

There was concern expressed about service level agreements and preventing data loss is a worry for 70 per cent of respondents. Preventing outages was next on the worry list at 64 per cent while 58 per cent rated keeping security up to date as an issue. The last point baffles me slightly is because one of the key factors to adopting cloud services is that the service provider does the upgrading and updating seamlessly in the background.

“What’s clear from our survey is that there’s not yet any single ‘killer app’ that’s driving cloud deployment,” the report said. “This bears out the finding that companies’ intentions around cloud adoption are driven by a combination of other factors, such as increased flexibility and reducing the cost of infrastructure.”

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Kevin Tea is a journalist and marketing communications professional who has worked for some of the leading blue chip companies in the UK and Europe. In the 1990s he became interested in how emerging Internet-based technologies could change the way that people worked and became an administrator on the Telework Europa Forum on CompuServe. With other colleagues he took part in a four year European Commission sponsored project to look at the way that the Internet could benefit remote communities. His blog is a resource for SMEs who want to use cloud computing and Web 2.0 technologies.