Two-thirds of large enterprises are not realizing the full benefits of their cloud migration journeys identifying security and the complexity of business and operational change as barriers, according to Accenture.
Based on a survey of 200 senior IT professionals from large businesses worldwide, the report — “Perspectives on Cloud Outcomes: Expectation vs. Reality” — suggests that the cloud migration journey is more complex than anticipated for innovation and efficiency.
While the vast majority of companies cite achieving some level of their desired cloud outcomes — overall satisfaction levels exceed 90% on average — only about one-third of companies, on average, reported they have fully achieved their expected outcomes across the four categories of cost (34%), speed (36%), business enablement (35%) and service levels (34%).
“Like most new technologies, capturing the intended benefits of cloud takes time; there is a learning curve influenced by many variables and barriers. Taking your cloud program to the next level isn’t something anyone can do overnight — clients need to approach it strategically with a trusted partner to access deep expertise, show measurable business value and expedite digital transformation,” said Kishore Durg, senior managing director of Accenture Cloud for Technology Services. “Also, if IT departments fail to showcase direct business outcomes from their cloud journeys, they risk becoming less relevant and losing out to emerging business functions, like the office of the chief data officer, that are better able to use cloud technologies to enable rapid innovation.”
The barrier to realizing the benefits of cloud that survey respondents noted most frequently (when asked to identify the top three) was “security and compliance risk,” cited by 65% of respondents, followed by “complexity of business and organizational change” (55%), “legacy infrastructure and/or application sprawl” (43%) and “lack of cloud skills with the organization” (42%).
The report suggests that, to overcome the skills barrier, IT teams might look to managed service providers to run cloud services on their behalf. In fact, 87% of the surveyed executives said they would consider the use of managed cloud services, with the greatest number of respondents citing “access to the right skills” as the top benefit of these services — even slightly ahead of “lower costs.”
Similarly, the cloud model employed by organizations appears to have an influence on their ability to capture expected cloud results. Companies employing private clouds tend to lag their counterparts employing public cloud or hybrid models when it comes to fully achieving expected outcomes (28% vs. 42% and 38% respectively).
While private cloud users seem to struggle more generally, they are most challenged in achieving desired cost saving and service level improvements. More than half of public cloud users (54%) report having captured their cost saving goals, yet only 28% have experienced their anticipated speed-to-market benefits.
“Our Accenture research also shows that when it comes to cloud technology, the more clients consume, the greater value they’ll see in return. Specifically, as clients expand their use of cloud applications and footprint across different functions, divisions and geographies, they’ll increase the areas to which the technology can bring value; in short, the more widespread your adoption, the greater the value lift, creating an upward curve in return on investment,” Kishore added.