Person typing on a laptop as a large blue cloud and smaller ones hover over the laptop.
Image: Adobe Stock

Technology media company Foundry (formerly IDG) released the findings of its ninth Cloud Computing Survey and found that IT decision-makers (ITDMs) are running up against several challenges when implementing a cloud strategy. These include controlling costs, data privacy and the cost of security.

According to the survey, budgets for cloud computing continue to rise, with companies spending $78 million in the coming 12 months, up from $73 million in 2020. Additionally, 69% of organizations have increased spending on cloud migration over the past 12 months, while the next 18 months will see 63% of companies with most or all of their IT infrastructure in the cloud, up from the current figure of 41%.

Challenges of cloud adoption

The study found that cloud adoption positively impacted revenue, with 60% of ITDMs reporting their organization saw sustainable growth over the past 12 months, with 64% for enterprises and 58% for small to medium-sized businesses. Companies will allocate nearly one-third of their total IT budgets to cloud computing.

The top three challenges reported by ITDMs are controlling cloud costs, data privacy and security and a lack of security skills. They reported security expertise, better cloud management and cost management capabilities as the items they need most from their cloud providers. The study respondents also noted the cost of moving data into the cloud and between clouds as another significant challenge.

SEE: Cloud migration is still accelerating, despite security concerns

Security management was another important issue. More than a third (35%) of ITDMs reported data privacy and security concerns, while another third (34%) mentioned their organization lacked the skills and expertise to keep cloud data secure. One quarter (25%) cited securing and protecting cloud resources as a pain point.

“Although enterprise businesses are leading the charge, SMBs aren’t far behind when it comes to cloud migration,” said Stacey Raap, marketing & research manager, Foundry. “As more organizations move towards fully being in the cloud, IT teams will need the proper talent and resources to manage their cloud infrastructure and overcome any security and privacy hurdles that come with being in the cloud.”

The study revealed other challenges, including a lack of cloud management skills, and difficulty finding staff members who possess these skills.

Addressing the concerns of cloud migration

Another takeaway from the study is that 44% of companies relying on more than one cloud provider don’t consider one of them to be a strategic partner, while 40% do. Organizations with budgets over $10 million are more likely to call a provider a strategic partner. High-tech and retail companies are more likely to say they have a strategic partnership with a cloud provider than healthcare and service organizations.

Overall, ITDMs report their top needs from cloud providers include security expertise, better cloud and cost management capabilities, and strategic guidance. Financial services companies want more powerful governance tools to assist them in complying with industry regulations, while educational organizations want training and support services. Security is a priority across the board, which mirrors the results of Foundry’s 2022 State of the CIO study.

The Cloud Computing Study states: “Given that the majority of ITDMs have already moved or are in the process of moving a significant portion of their IT infrastructure to the cloud, it makes sense that what they want most from vendors is ongoing help managing their cloud infrastructure as a coherent, cohesive, affordable whole.”

Cloud budgets will continue to increase, with the top growth areas for 2022 being SaaS, PaaS, SECaaS, IaaS and cloud analytics. Decision-makers want help implementing their company’s cloud strategy. Therefore, technology marketers must keep these needs in mind and stay current on industry trends.

SEE: The cloud has changed everything–except how we market it

It’s also important to consider the objectives behind an organization’s cloud investments. While disaster recovery and business continuity are the main reasons companies turn to cloud computing, data privacy and security are the most significant obstacles to developing a cloud strategy. Considering the reported challenges in cost control, security capabilities and skills, providers should offer solutions that meet the needs of customers and prospects.

Companies can mitigate the costs associated with cloud migration by planning carefully. A robust change management plan will allow the organization to manage the project effectively and minimize disruption to the company. An incremental migration is one way for the business to manage its investment. A batch migration system enables the project to be broken down into smaller pieces, allowing more flexibility.

Foundry conducted its 2022 Cloud Computing Survey in February 2022. It’s based on responses from 850 ITDMs involved in the cloud computing purchase process for companies that either have or are planning at least one application or part of their infrastructure in the cloud.

Subscribe to the Cloud Insider Newsletter

This is your go-to resource for the latest news and tips on the following topics and more, XaaS, AWS, Microsoft Azure, DevOps, virtualization, the hybrid cloud, and cloud security. Delivered Mondays and Wednesdays

Subscribe to the Cloud Insider Newsletter

This is your go-to resource for the latest news and tips on the following topics and more, XaaS, AWS, Microsoft Azure, DevOps, virtualization, the hybrid cloud, and cloud security. Delivered Mondays and Wednesdays