State of Cloud Computing Adoption: Research Says…

Turning on a cloud service is easy. Just about everybody is doing it. Then comes the hard part: Integrating it with existing on-premises systems; optimizing and managing cloud services; and then repeating that success in a predictable, scalable way.

Indeed, cloud adoption has increased 39% from last year, with 65% of U.S. companies pursuing a hybrid cloud strategy, according to new IDC research results sponsored by Cisco Systems Inc. Moreover, on-premises private cloud spending will increase 39% percent over the next two years, the research results forecast.

Moreover, near-term cloud adoption plans are accelerating (see chart below).

Source: IDC

So far, so good. That sounds like a win-win scenario for IT services providers that want to blend on- and off-premises solutions for customers.

Deploy, Scale, Repeat

But here's the challenge -- and the potential chaos: Only 24% of U.S. companies currently are pursuing so-called "Optimized, Managed, or Repeatable" cloud strategies. Translation: Three out of four U.S. companies could be stumbling with incomplete or poorly formulated cloud strategies that don't scale. And many companies don't leverage the full power of hybrid clouds (see chart below).

Among the obstacles to success that IDC noted:

  • skill gaps;
  • legacy siloed organization structures; and
  • IT/LOB misalignment.

To ChannelE2E, that looks like a classic "People, Process, Product" challenge. Ripping and replacing all three of those areas simply isn't an option for a range of reasons (financial hurdles, corporate culture, and HR/legal issues, etc.).

Cloud Professional Services

With those challenges in mind, Cisco has launched the a new set of Cloud Professional Services to "help businesses navigate the multicloud maze and optimize their cloud environments."

The professional services, according to Cisco, include:

  • Multicloud management and orchestration services for Cisco Cloud Center -- which help customers to model once, deploy and manage anywhere.
  • Cloud Acceleration services that accelerate the design and deployment of both traditional private clouds and cloud-native solutions such as OpenStack and PaaS.
  • Enhanced application and cloud migration services to automate and de-risk the complexity involved in onboarding and migrating applications and workloads to the cloud.
  • New IT transformation services focused on DevOps-related change management initiatives that help align business processes and capabilities enabling customers to integrate and optimize across both traditional and DevOps environments and teams.

Ranking Customers on Cloud Maturity

Amid those challenges, the door is wide open for MSPs, CSPs and IT consulting firms to further assist businesses with their overall hybrid cloud strategies.

Among the areas worth studying: IDC's cloud maturity model for customers. Using the five-stage model (see chart below), channel partners can assist customers on their overall cloud journeys -- which feature more and more automation.

PS: The overall IDC research results also explore such areas as The Internet of Things, OpenStack, and plenty more.

Joe Panettieri

Joe Panettieri is co-founder & editorial director of MSSP Alert and ChannelE2E, the two leading news & analysis sites for managed service providers in the cybersecurity market.