The Cloud hangover continues as UK businesses suffer complexity headache

Thursday, August 20, 2015 by Sungard Availability Services

Sungard Availability Services® (Sungard AS) today announces research revealing that nearly half of organisations believe that deploying Cloud solutions has increased the complexity of their IT environment. These findings lead on from recent revelations that the 'Cloud hangover' is costing UK businesses over £1 billion every year. The research questioned 150 senior UK IT decision makers in organisations with 500+ employees*.

Despite being perceived by many as an IT cure-all for complex and sprawling legacy systems, cloud computing has not been the silver-bullet many anticipated. While decreasing the IT team's day-to-day maintenance was a key driver in cloud adoption for 45% of business, 35% of IT decision makers said that adopting cloud has made their job more complex.

Increasing sophistication, increasing stress

The findings revealed that cloud adoption has in fact left organisations facing more complexity than ever before. 37% of IT decision makers complained that the cloud has made their job more stressful while 24% added that their role is now more difficult since deploying cloud. In fact, 70% of businesses believe that cloud computing has simply added a new set of challenges and complexity to their workload.

Part of the problem may result from an increase in cloud suppliers, with 55% admitting to using three or more separate cloud platforms. Running so many systems is clearly taking its toll on organisations - with 25% confessing to concerns that their organisation uses too many platforms.

Causes of complexity

  • 65% said that integrating cloud with legacy IT was one of their biggest IT challenges
  • 56% agreed they are now paying more to ensure the IT estate remains tightly integrated
  • 39% are finding it difficult to marry cloud deployments with business objectives
  • 23% had issues in managing multiple cloud silos.

Keith Tilley, EVP, global sales & customer services management at Sungard Availability Services, said: "First cost and now complexity - is it any wonder that organisations have been left somewhat disappointed in their cloud deployments and are now rethinking their strategy?

"Of course when deployed in the correct situations cloud computing can have a positive impact - helping over 77% of organisations increase business agility, 67% their availability and 43% improve their response to customer and market demands.

"... despite the benefits there is still education to be done in ensuring the market takes a realistic view of cloud... the challenge of deploying cloud correctly - as part of a Hybrid IT strategy that encompasses the whole IT estate - means that going it alone is not an option. Working with managed services providers can help businesses adopt a tailored approach to their IT ... to create an environment that is not too complex to manage."

John Turner, IT director, BDO LLP, commented: "...we need to balance moving to the cloud alongside risk and the need to continue running business critical and legacy systems which are not in the cloud. Working with a technology partner has been crucial in developing our Hybrid IT solution, as well as simply understanding our organisation's requirements."

Kate Hanaghan, research director, infrastructure services, TechMarketView commented: "I talk about the phenomenon of the slow burning cloud, or in other words, while some activities can be relatively straightforward to implement, moving sprawling legacy business applications into the cloud is a different beast entirely."

*Research conducted February 2015, by Vanson Bourne for Sungard AS. 400 interviews in UK (150), France (150); Sweden (50) & Ireland (50) across IT decision makers in businesses with 500+ employees in UK, France & Sweden and 250 in Ireland.