Imagine if the Covid-19 pandemic had occurred five years ago, before cloud adoption really took off.
What would have been different?
- Your whole team would not have been able to work from home.
- The Internet would have broken repeatedly under the strain.
- Retailers would not have been able to move quickly to online trading – if at all.
- The vaccine would have taken years to develop and produce.
In a nutshell, the world – and your business - would have come to a halt.
Fast forward by five years and these things were much less of an issue. Why? Because of the massive upswing in cloud adoption that took place between 2016 and now. According to the Harvard Business Review, before Covid-19 about 20% to 30% of work was done through the cloud, and companies had initially planned to accelerate that to 80% over an 8- to 10-year process.
The pandemic really accelerated that move. Worldwide spending on cloud services reached $34.6 billion in Q2 2020 – up 11% on the previous quarter – as organizations rushed to establish solutions for remote work, remote learning, and e-commerce.
Risks in rushing to cloud
The rush to cloud may be necessary to navigate through the new economic landscape, but it does not come without risks. Costs can escalate if your data usage grows unexpectedly. Sovereignty of your data in the cloud is also a concern.
Of course, not all data should reside in the cloud - some will stay on premises – as unwinding the “spaghetti” can be difficult. It’s important to plan the concrete steps of the transition to the cloud and identify which applications it makes sense to move. The journey to the cloud is long and expensive so it is better to make sure that there are immediate and tangible benefits right from the beginning.
Don’t start from scratch
Most of you aren’t keen to start over from scratch; 70% of C-level leaders told Harvard Business Review they wanted to keep running legacy systems as long as possible - despite the limits they set on innovation and market agility.
This fact alone triggers the need for a hybrid cloud strategy to integrate data from the edge, on-premises and cloud to gain the insights that will enable your organization to reimagine business. That reimagining can reveal a whole new economic landscape, internally for your business and externally – giving you lots of opportunities to collaborate.
Your business’s economic landscape has undoubtedly changed since the beginning of the pandemic (we know ours has!). Technology has – also undoubtedly – played a part in navigating through this change and succeeding. Cloud certainly plays a big part.
To succeed, leaders cannot just focus on developing a cloud strategy; they need to be deeply involved in the cloud journey. It's about creating a business that is fit for the future – resilient, innovative and customer experience driven.
Cloud has the power to reimagine your business, spark innovation and democratize complex technology.
I recently had a conversation about digital readiness and navigating the new economic landscape with Adel Al-Saleh, CEO of T-Systems, who shared his reflections. Watch the video by clicking below.