Security has always been an issue with the cloud, but there are new factors at work that are driving dissatisfaction and presenting new challenges.
Though many businesses are turning to cloud computing to increase their flexibility and cut costs, a new study shows that the opposite is happening. KPMG’s Global Cloud Report surveyed 674 business and IT executives and 48% expect cloud computing to cut IT costs, while 33% said the cloud computing project cost more than they’d initially planned for.
IT Managers have also expressed concerns with the cloud, as we reported recently. They like the cloud for their businesses, but for personal files, it’s a different story.
Execs also said they hoped cloud computing would make IT costs more predictable. Since cloud services mostly use subscription services, this should be able to help Finance more accurately forecast. But most cloud services are scalable for each business, meaning they offer different levels of service tailored to a certain business. Because of that, 26% of businesses said that a lack of visibility into their future needs made it difficult to make costs predictable.
But costs weren’t the only driving factor for integrating a cloud computing system over maintaining a traditional system. Other challenges found in the study:
- 31% said integrating cloud services with existing architecture was difficult
- 30% said avoiding data loss and protecting privacy was a challenge
- 30% were concerned about losing control over their IT infrastructure, and
- 26% said there is a lack of standards and interoperability between cloud computing providers.
The good news: It is possible to see positives
It isn’t out of the question to get the benefits out of cloud computing. Cost-reduction and productivity-boosts can happen. After all, 70% of organizations said cloud services have delivered cost savings and improved efficiency.
Here are some key steps to achieving those benefits:
- Don’t expect overnight success: The cloud won’t completely eliminate the need for maintenance from IT. They’ll have to spend time moving data and aiding staffers in any complications. Managing cloud vendors and contracts will also be key.
- Stay secure: Data security is one of the biggest concerns for cloud computing and a security breach could negate any positives you get from the cloud. Talk to IT about security efforts they’ve implemented – data encryption, managing user access and backup/recovery of data are all good signs.
- Train everyone: When workflow changes in any department, there can be a productivity drop. If Finance has plans to face a whole new cloud-based accounting system, for instance, try to get as much training in as you can before IT makes the complete switch.
Do you have any cloud-computing tips? Let us know in the comments below.