Cloud computing reversal: From ‘go away’ to ‘I can’t miss out’

More execs are scared of missing the boat on cloud computing than of cloud computing itself—a major change in the market

IT's cloud reversal: From ‘go away’ to ‘I can’t miss out'
Dennis Jarvis (CC BY-SA 2.0)

Isaac Asimov once said, “I do not fear computers. I fear the lack of them.” That quote has stuck with me to this day. There’s no doubt that computers and computing have changed our lives. Without them, we would be slaves to processes and paper.

I was reminded of Asimov’s quote when I saw the results of a recent poll done by Comvault of 100 IT leaders. More than two thirds said that they were worried about keeping up to date with the latest products and iterations across the major cloud providers. In other words, they fear missing out.

About a quarter (24 percent) of those polled said they were a cloud-only organization, which perhaps means they are very small or very new businesses. Additionally, 32 percent said they are cloud-first, with plans to become cloud-only, so they are likely mid-sized businesses. Also, 6 percent said they did not have a specific migration plan, which means they are BDCs (big dumb companies).

Finally, when those surveyed asked to sum up their cloud journeys in one word, one respondent said “frustrating.” But the most popular words were “innovative” (51 percent) and “exciting” (35 percent).

This survey is proof that cloud computing has really turned the corner, in terms of how enterprises think of and consume cloud services. If this poll were done just three years ago, the responses would have been more along the lines of “I fear the cloud. Go away, please.” 

Recent events, such as the acceleration of service releases from the major cloud providers—Amazon Web Services, Microsoft, and Google—have many people thinking that cloud is not only okay to use but, unless you get onboard soon, it’s another technology that will sail away without you.

This pattern is similar to what we saw happen to those companies that failed to adopt the web during its rise—and ended up playing catchup later. For many, it killed their business entirely.

If you believe you’re missing out on the value of cloud computing, you probably are. Nearly everyone will soon find out that cloud technology will be strategic to the success of their companies. A company that can use the cloud for strategic purposes, such as the ability to change the business on a dime to follow market changes, has a much better chance to dominate over competitors that can’t.

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