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Survey Finds Cost Savings from Cloud Elusive for Some

Access to data from multiple mobile devices outweighs cost savings when it comes to justifying the reason for deploying cloud-based solutions.

That's the rather curious finding from a study released this week by CSC, the global integrator based in Falls Church, Va. According to CSC's Cloud Usage Index, in a report based on a survey of 3,645 IT decision makers in eight countries, 33 percent cited access to data from mobile devices as the primary reason for adopting cloud computing. Only 17 percent said reducing costs was the most important reason for moving to the cloud.

Meanwhile, 82 percent said their cloud efforts have reduced their IT costs but in many cases those savings are minimal. In the United States, 23 percent of enterprises and 45 percent of small businesses with fewer than 50 employees said they were not saving any money at all, while 35 percent of U.S. organizations have said those savings were less than $20,000.

"Although requirements for business agility and cost savings certainly factor in, neither is the single most important driver for cloud adoption," according to the report. At the same time, "in terms of overall IT performance, an overwhelming 93 percent of respondents say cloud improved their data center efficiency/utilization or another measure. And 80 percent see improvements like these within six months of moving to the cloud."

Among the other findings in CSC's Cloud Usage Index:

  • 14 percent downsized their IT departments after moving to the cloud.
  • 20 percent of organizations hired more cloud experts.
  • 65 percent signed on for subscriptions lasting more than one year.
  • 64 percent reported the cloud has helped lower energy use.
  • 48 percent of U.S. government agencies moved at least one workflow to the cloud in line with the "cloud-first" initiative.

Despite the minimal overall IT savings, 47 percent said they saw lower operating costs after moving to the cloud.

I find it surprising that cost savings isn't a higher priority and outcome. I'd be curious to hear if the IT cost savings are more important and substantial in your organization than CSC's Cloud Index suggests. Leave a comment below or drop me a line at jschwartz@rcpmag.com.

Posted by Jeffrey Schwartz on 12/07/2011 at 1:14 PM


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