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Research: 2012 State of Cloud Computing

Research: Mainframes

The Cloud You Didn't Know You Had

(also see our cloud ROI Modeler)

Next time that annoying guy starts going on about how "the cloud is going to change everything," smack him upside the head. "Everything" has already changed, say the 511 business IT professionals, all from companies with 50 or more employees, responding to our InformationWeek 2012 State of Cloud Computing Survey. Adoption of public cloud services has been on a consistent upward pace for the past four years, since we began keeping track. One-third of 2012 respondents' organizations are already receiving services from a cloud provider, and an additional 40% are in the planning or evaluation stages. Just 27% say they won't consider it. In our 2008 cloud survey, people couldn't even agree on a definition--21% of 456 respondents from companies of all sizes said cloud was "pretty much a marketing term used haphazardly."

OK, so not everything has changed. 

Still, frustration with vendor hype aside, all types of public cloud services are gaining followers. So IT's got this down, right? Not so fast. We're seeing major gaps in how organizations are selecting, integrating and monitoring the services their employees depend on. The bulk of cloud initiatives come from the ground up and are reactive, in response to line-of-business requirements. IT rarely has an overarching vision of how it all fits together.

We expect the march to the public cloud to continue unabated, spurred by the siren song of lower costs, quicker implementation, and even less need for internal IT. Should we just fall in line and accept the inevitable?

Not so fast. Cloud computing is still very much a work in progress, wedged somewhere between CB radios and penicillin on the worldwide-usefulness scale. Providers' offers of lower initial cost and faster ramp up have lulled many organizations into a sloppy start, but you can get back on track. In this report, we'll lay out the critical steps every organization needs to take to make sure its cloud leap goes on more than just faith. (R4020212)

Survey Name InformationWeek 2012 State of Cloud Computing Survey
Survey Date December 2011
Region North America
Number of Respondents 511 at organizations with 50 or more employees
Purpose To determine in the role of cloud computing in the enterprise
Methodology InformationWeek surveyed business technology decision-makers at North American companies with 50 or more employees. The survey was conducted online, and respondents were recruited via an email invitation containing an embedded link to the survey. The email invitation was sent to qualified InformationWeek subscribers.

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