The Cloud Industry Forum is pleased to present our 20th whitepaper outlining the position of cloud adoption across the UK. We have been measuring cloud trends for the last 7 years; although growth is slowing marginally it demonstrates that cloud services are clearly now mainstream strategy for most UK businesses:
Although cloud brings huge benefits to business, we believe the UK technology landscape continues to be increasingly complex. With this is mind we believe that the work of the Forum is more necessary and relevant than ever. As a community of interested cloud focused parties, it is not unreasonable to expect reports from the Cloud Industry Forum to attempt to lead businesses down the path of “cloud only” services. In reality, the Forum fiercely protects a position of vendor independence as this is what our members value and frankly, what the market needs. To that end, we recognise that the path that UK businesses are clearly on is a “cloud first” approach but certainly not “cloud everything”. While some smaller businesses make the logical step to remove their depreciated hardware assets and move entirely to cloud, that is simply not feasible for many larger companies with large infrastructure investments. Hence, as is apparent in this report – the hybrid IT route is now established as the predominant choice of most businesses.
This report moves us on significantly from our first view of the market back in 2009/10. While cloud computing is now clearly mainstream, there are several inhibitors that have not moved and, indeed, have (in the case of data privacy) been further exacerbated by Brexit. For the UK to be a credible sovereign cloud dominion on the global stage, the GDPR must be acted on – 86% of businesses are not ready.
We are now familiar with the language and tone of Digital Transformation. Cloud services will be a vital by-product of this, an assumed default that businesses must use to address their needs to be agile, scalable and flexible enough to rapidly move (or lead) in changing market conditions. The biggest concern that comes from this report relates to our most important asset: people, and the shortage of digital skills in the market. Perhaps of more concern is that this must be led from the top down, and the IT staff of many businesses do not see the necessary skills in their leadership team to drive this change. To this end, the Cloud Industry Forum has built and launched our Professional Membership programme to aid the development of key digital and cloud computing skills.
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