As this shift to cloud progresses, here are the top cloud trends Tableau sees shaping 2017
In 2016, cloud technologies went mainstream. With maturity, also came the realization that moving to the cloud doesn’t happen overnight. CIOs are prioritizing hosted computing and cloud data storage to now approach this shift as a gradual, multi-year journey.
With global spending on public cloud services market projected to reach USD 1.26 billion in 2016 in India (Gartner), IT teams are gearing up for this shift. They are building expertise with new training priorities and recruiting employees with cloud experience.
Many start-ups and small businesses will continue to go all-in on cloud. Enterprises will find success in a slow but steady move from on-prem. Hybrid ecosystems—of data, software, and infrastructure—will be the reality for most established organizations. As this shift to cloud progresses, here are the top cloud trends, we see shaping 2017:
1. A gradual shift in demand for IT skill set in the move towards cloud technologies
In order to execute on their organization’s technology roadmap, IT is shifting its skill set. Training programs are focusing on cloud security, hosted databases, and Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS). And IT managers are stepping up their search for candidates with experience in DevOps practices and cloud platforms like AWS, Azure and Google Cloud Platform. IT is also reorienting their approach. While IT services firms are reskilling or even reshuffling low-end talent, expect 2017 as the year to witness an upsurge in skillsets as Indian companies shift aggressively towards new technology, data analytics and cloud services. Top-down waterfall methodologies for multi-year on-prem deployments have long been the standard.
With cloud, concerns like scalability and maintenance are all but taken care of now. In their place, IT is adopting agile methods that provide continuous development and delivery of projects. Hosted servers supporting a POC, for example, are now seen as a disposable resource. They can be spun up and shut down in just a matter of hours, giving IT new bandwidth to drive more strategic projects.
2. More Indian organizations will embrace a hybrid world
Many organizations are living a hybrid reality split between on-prem and cloud environments. An IDC report predicts that by the end of 2017, 60% of the APAC top 1,000 enterprises will have digital transformation at the center of their corporate strategy with Hybrid cloud as the underlying architecture. A new breed of flexible software will help organizations simplify this hybrid world. These tools move seamlessly across cloud and on-prem systems. This move should be more pronounced in rapidly digitizing economies like India where many CIOs have adopted a hybrid approach to address data fragmentation challenges across local servers and cloud services.
The future for Hybrid is not cloudy at all, with a recent report from Markets and Markets projecting the opportunity to grow from USD 33.28 billion currently to USD 91.74 billion by 2021. There is a tremendous increase in cloud adoption so much so that at least 90% of the businesses in India use at least one technology that is on the cloud.
3. IT actively partners with business users
With trials that are quick, easy, and free to spin up, business users often adopt SaaS applications without IT’s knowledge. This can result in security loopholes, licensing issues, and a proliferation of unsupported applications. With cloud becoming a strategic priority for many enterprises, IT will now work in close partnership with business users and proactively vetting popular applications resulting into SaaS apps being fully integrated into the business.
IT can connect apps to relevant data streams, meet security requirements with SAML authentication, and route billing through appropriate channels spreading benefits across the business as users gain a vastly-improved user experience. Portals from IdPs like OneLogin and Okta simplify access. In-house IT experts offer technical support. Hosted products from Concur, Zendesk, NetSuite, Workday and Tableau, for example, help businesses gain operational flexibility by way of cutting deployment burdens and eliminating the need to manually maintain and upgrade software.
4. Software governance improves life for IT and the business
As the guards of corporate policy and security standards, IT must often restrict download rights and application permissions for desktop software. This need to lock down software is now falling away with growing adoption of IT-deployed cloud applications.
Hosted applications allow administrators to monitor usage and manage features at any time. This allows IT to maintain fine-grained control of things like authentication, data security and user permissions. It also helps reduce restrictions placed on end users. Business users are allowed to choose and customize their applications. Access to cutting-edge technology is now recognized as a top contributor to overall employee satisfaction. And with newfound autonomy over their software, many employees are becoming more productive and satisfied with their workflow. Organizations making the shift to hosted applications are poised to win big as they fight for top talent. Especially in India, cloud is being increasingly viewed upon as the building block/base for building a digital enterprise.
5. Flexible analytics solve IoT’s last-mile challenge
With large quantities of IoT data now easily ingested into the cloud storage, focus is shifting from capture to analysis. Organizations are demanding analysis tools that seamlessly connect to and integrate diverse forms of cloud-hosted data.
IoT data tends to be heterogeneous and stored across multiple systems, from Hadoop clusters to NoSQL databases. It’s no small feat to access and understand all that data. As a result, the market is calling for analytical tools that seamlessly connect to and combine a wide variety of cloud-hosted data sources. These tools enable businesses to explore and visualize any type of data stored anywhere and maximize the value of their IoT investment.
In a recent research, IDC has also revealed that as the big data analytics market in Asia-Pacific continues to mature (with cities in the region getting smarter and more connected), there will be a growing demand for cloud-based delivery of business analytics services, amongst others.
6. Collaboration comes standard with all applications
Collaboration takes time, and a lot of it. In fact, collaborative tasks have recently ballooned by more than 50%. But features baked into cloud applications are helping to streamline teamwork in the office. Expect 2017 as the year when cloud applications address these issues. These applications will lead the way with built-in collaboration tools like in-app chat, messaging, and commenting.
Collaborating with data is also becoming easier. Modern analytics tools seamlessly incorporate sharing and collaboration features. These self-service products are helping people easily share data and dashboards, all within their browser.
Similarly, intelligent features like subscriptions and recommendations are taking the pain out of collaboration in large groups. This new cohort of cloud applications help people stay focused and productive, effectively transforming collaboration from a time-sink to a value-add.
Today, cloud computing is making it possible to drive intelligence and insights from the immense magnitude of data available, converting it into predictive and analytical power. This power puts data and cloud computing at the center of the analysis and action that governments are taking to address different societal issues.
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