Open Group cloud survey shows a lack of IT preparedness, especially on measuring cloud's true costs

Updated: May 09, 2011

These are some of the results from a recent survey by The Open Group, which polled 307 IT professionals who had purchasing or decision-making influence over cloud computing. The study earlier this year found that cloud computing required C-level approval at 55 percent of the companies, while 22 percent left it to IT directors and 8 percent to enterprise architects. [Disclosure: The Open Group is a sponsor of BriefingsDirect podcasts.]

Among the take-aways from the results: "You need to take the metrics and find out what your IT finances are to make a true business decision about cloud," said Dr. Chris Harding, Forum Director for The Open Group Cloud Computing Work Group. "And you need to track that as your move forward."

Among other findings from the survey:

  • An impressive 92 percent of respondents said they are either currently using some cloud (49 percent) or had it on their IT road map (43 percent). The remaining 8 percent said they had no cloud plans.

  • Only 17 percent of those polled said they use or would use public cloud, while the remainder were divided between private (29 percent) and hybrid (45 percent). Another 9 percent were unsure what they would use.

    The paradox arises because industry executives know that cloud computing will impact their business, but are not yet prepared to handle that impact and, in many cases, don't know how to measure it.

  • The main drivers behind cloud adoption were cost (21 percent), timeliness and agility (19 percent), and resource optimization (17 percent).

  • Data security is the biggest concern for companies (18 percent), followed by integration issues (15 percent), and governance (14 percent).

  • A majority of participants (55 percent) said that cloud return on investment (ROI) would be easy to justify. However, only 35 percent of respondents said they had mechanisms in place to effectively measure ROI.

  • An overwhelming 82 percent said they expected cloud to significantly impact one or more business processes, but only 28 percent are actually prepared for these changes.

  • When asked if they were satisfied with cloud education and training available, 51 percent percent said they were satisfied or very satisfied, 34 percent said they were somewhat satisfied, and 15 percent said they were dissatisfied.

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