Cloud Computing Services Have 'Come Of Age' In Enterprise: Survey


More than 90 percent of large enterprises are using at least one cloud computing service, illustrating cloud computing has "come of age" in 2010, a survey recently released by CA Technologies found.

That same 90 percent of large enterprises are also looking to increase their cloud usage and grow beyond cloud computing services like collaboration and start taking advantage of more complex infrastructure and platform cloud computing services.

The CA survey, conducted by Management Insight, polled IT professionals in North America and Europe to determine the main drivers influencing their decisions around cloud computing services.

The survey revealed that 92 percent of the largest enterprises, dubbed "mega enterprises," have at least one cloud computing service deployed, while 86 percent of large enterprises and 91 percent of medium enterprises are also using at least one cloud computing service. On average, the survey revealed, companies are using six cloud computing services with collaboration applications like video conferencing and e-mail being the most common followed by infrastructure, disaster recovery and backup and software services.

The survey found that the primary incentive for an organization to move to the cloud is to save money, 44 percent of respondents cited savings as the main driver. Saving money was followed by cost control, which 35 percent said was the main catalyst for leveraging cloud computing services. Other reasons survey respondents said they were going with the cloud were to boost productivity and to standardize IT.

Meanwhile, among respondents that said they won't invest in cloud computing services, security and service quality are their biggest fears. According to the CA survey, 68 percent of respondents are concerned about security, while 40 percent worry about poor service quality. Additionally, about half of the respondents consider risk of job loss and loss of control over the IT environment as a deterrent against cloud computing services.

And as cloud computing moves into 2011, the CA survey found that the attitudes toward public and private clouds are starting to align. Where enterprises once took dramatically different stances on public vs. private, the survey found that cost savings, resource efficiencies and flexibility are key drivers for public clouds; while cost, scalability, flexibility and manageability were integral for users moving to private cloud computing services. Additionally, survey respondents said security is both a driver and deterrent in both public and private cloud computing environments.