Public Cloud – Maybe Too Much, Too Fast? Not at all…
Randy Mizzoni, SVP, Sales & Marketing
April 21, 2021
The IT industry is growing at an unprecedented rate. Research from ISG indicates that global spending on IT and Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) in the first quarter of 2021 has grown by 11% since last year – $17bn of spending globally in a quarter.
What’s really interesting to see is just how much of that spending is as-a-service cloud based spending. This was just under $10bn of the total representing a 15% year-on-year increase. People are really buying into cloud based services this year.
The Covid-19 pandemic left Q1 2020 largely unaffected in markets such as North America and Europe so this is a useful year-on-year comparison and shows strong growth. Many companies will be accelerating various digital transformation projects because the disruption of the past year provides a neat bookend – it’s time to move on and build the future.
But is the future really a project that will take three years to deliver? With change taking place so fast, don’t you think that the world will have changed by then?
As Mckinsey noted in their analysis of the ‘next normal’, the recovery from the pandemic will be digital. Advisors like McKinsey have been united in their belief that we are moving from an era where digital transformation required a vision and a five-year plan to the creation of infrastructure than can be subject to continuous improvement. Technology, and business in general, is moving too fast to plan several years ahead – the IT systems in your business need agility.
Many executives have traditionally been wary of cloud based systems. They wanted more control, more systems in-house, and less data transmitted across the Internet – in general it all felt a little risky. Now all this uncertainty and risk is focused on the companies that were not agile enough to pivot and reinvent their services and processes in the middle of a global crisis.
A cloud based approach is now vital for business resilience. You can no longer avoid it by suggesting that you are uncertain about the risk. Avoid this now and you will be left behind or will face another crisis that just cannot be managed with traditional infrastructure. The only way that you can continuously evolve without difficulty is using a cloud-based architecture.
But how do you catch up now? It’s one thing to admit – yes we need more flexibility and it looks like a cloud based approach can help – but if you have spent years avoiding it, then how can you embrace it now? It can feel overwhelming.
When you do start looking into the various services then it can feel even more overwhelming. Look at Azure from Microsoft. I looked at their updates page and started scrolling through Q4 2020 – there were over 300 updates announced. That’s approximately 5 announcements about new Azure features every single working day. Take all those changes across an entire year and it feels a bit like Moore’s Law – the rate of change is exponential.
One thing is clear. Doing nothing is not an option. This wave of digital transformation is going to ensure that your competition is better equipped and ready to move quickly in any future crisis. You can’t wait and just hope every business reverts back to 2019. Your employees and internal customers are already aware of the need to embrace resilience – they have lived this past year so step up and show them that you have a plan.
Step one is to find a partner – a Managed Service Provider like WatServ with experience and accreditation to advise on many different platforms and services. I’m not just saying this because I work for WatServ. Think about all those Azure updates – you really need an expert partner that is on top of what’s out there and what is changing.
Your focus should be to work with a partner on:
- Demystifying the cloud. Cutting through the jargon and offering ideas for how your business could embrace a more resilient infrastructure.
- Exploring budget options and proposing what can be achieved at different price points.
- Ongoing advice: your ideal partner will offer this advice and will also stay on top of what is possible, what’s coming next. You should be able to rely on your partner to advise on what is possible and what might be a future option.
This is all we do at WatServ. On top of this, your ideal partner needs to not only be ‘aware’ and ‘innovative’ when choosing the right cloud options for your business, but they must be timely and always ready to help you apply and use rapidly changing and improving cloud services. This will drive continued service improvement and cost reduction. Select a partner that knows what they are doing and demonstrates they truly value your business through their ingenuity and quick action.
Once you go down this path then you can embrace change more easily. As I mentioned, cloud services are updated all the time. This takes you into a world where you can continuously improve your business, rather than requiring a multi-year change program every time you want to progress.
It’s never too late to build a roadmap into the next normal, the future beyond this pandemic and the business disruption it has created. Every business needs to be building a more resilient and agile technology infrastructure right now, not just because it is possible, but because it may be your only road to remaining relevant in a fast-changing business environment.
WatServ demonstrates best-in-class capability and market leadership through proven technology and customer commitment.
WatServ is an IT solutions provider that helps clients digitally transform their business through cloud technologies and services. Founded in 2006, WatServ specializes in providing hybrid and multi-cloud solutions and hosting complex, high-availability environments for enterprise-level applications. WatServ’s unique approach to planning, migrating and managing multi-cloud environments, plus premium 24x7x365 support, enables its global customers to focus on their core business. Relying on Microsoft and Google’s public clouds, in addition to its own private cloud, the company offers an ideal managed cloud environment engineered for security, reliability and performance. With offices in Canada and the United States, and with 1000’s of users connecting from around the world, WatServ is always on. For more information, please visit www.watserv.com.
WatServ is an affiliate of Brookfield Business Partners (BBU), a public company with majority ownership by Brookfield Asset Management Inc. and listed on the New York and Toronto Stock Exchange. More information about BBU is available at www.brookfield.com.