Over the last decade, cloud has changed the way nearly every business and organization works. In that time, spending on public cloud increased from $77 billion to over $400 billion, and we have seen the rise of Google, Microsoft and Amazon as major players in the public cloud market. Enterprise IT spending on private cloud solutions is also expected to rise from $72 billion this year to over $260 billion in 2027. But if the 2010s was the decade when cloud computing became mainstream, the 2020s will see it revolutionize business models and transform how we work. OpenText is a core part of this transformation with our rapid growth in cloud revenue. Today, I want to talk about two trends of cloud adoption that I believe will be most important in 2020.
As you like it
I expect choice to be the most prominent trend in cloud adoption in the coming year, something that both organizations and cloud providers will be focused on. From off-cloud to public cloud to SaaS solutions, organizations want the ability to choose the pattern of cloud adoption that works for them.
The big infrastructure providers are on board. Google enabled AWS and Azure, supporting user choice via Anthos. Anthos also allows private clouds to scale and provide choice. We’ve seen AWS come out with its own way of enabling on-premises workloads with AWS Outposts; and Microsoft Azure Arc.
Choice is important because the needs and sophistication of customers vary. Right now, it seems like there are two types of clients in the market.
The first is extremely savvy about what they need in the cloud and are saying: “This is the SLA. I expect this from the cloud vendor I’m working with already. These are the workloads I want on the cloud and these are the workloads I will keep on premises.” That is a very sophisticated view of cloud.
Conversely, many organizations, including large firms, are still in the category of: “I know I need to do something in the cloud, but I am not sure which workload to prioritize. I also don’t want to get locked in. I know I need options for different workload types.” Initial results from our Cloud Summits survey show that 82% of respondents have either no cloud strategy (27%) or are in the early stages of their cloud strategy (55%). And we are in 2020! So, for all the hype around cloud, it is still very early days. As our CEO wrote – this is the great Cloud migration. OpenText operates one of the largest private clouds in the world. We believe that customers will have the choice, but ultimately will pick the solution that matches their long-term needs – not just a short-term ROI – and for that, a single SLA for the service is critical.
Both of these user types demand choice, though their choices may differ. I identified five patterns of cloud adoption in a previous blog. Regardless of what stage users are in, they’re looking to see measurable return on their investments. The good news from early adopters is that this is happening: nearly half of early adopters say increased profitability is a major benefit. Thanks to cloud computing, companies can capture, sort and process their data to take advantage of powerful technologies and derive more value from their operations.
Apps over infrastructure
After choice, the next biggest trend in cloud computing will be a shift of focus to results rather than infrastructure stats. Organizations increasingly expect better integration among hardware vendors, system integrators, software vendors and cloud providers.
The importance of “four-nines” performance has shifted from infrastructure to the app level. If there is a problem, those players must work together to resolve the issue for the company, not try to pass the buck. Whether you’re talking about software as a service, platform as a service or infrastructure as a service, the key word is ‘service’.
For example, organizations such as the Greater Toronto Airports Authority (GTAA) are shifting focus to their core competencies. Increased traffic, along with a shifting digital environment, is what led to a move from on-premises content management to the OpenText Cloud. “Our objective is to move away from the infrastructure business and be more into the innovation business,” says Juan Pablo Rojas, IT Client Manager at GTAA.
Four-nines or even five-nines availability at the infrastructure level isn’t central to the GTAA’s concerns—it demands that availability at the application level. Users expect availability, stability and resilience from their applications, and suppliers must deliver this. The GTAA isn’t alone, either. A full 50% of those surveyed at the Cloud Summits said consistent SLA performance was their most valued characteristic in a cloud vendor.
Successful organizations make the choices that are right for their needs and work with partners that ensure they get the full power of their systems, whether off-cloud, on-cloud or hybrid. Nobody wants to be locked into a system that they outgrow.
The great news is that 2020 is the year in which organizations don’t need to compromise when it comes to their cloud journey. At OpenText, we’re ready to show you how to make your choice the right choice, whatever your needs.