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Cloud Masters Emerge

February 08, 2018

A new group of ‘cloud masters’ is emerging according to a global survey of 730 IT professionals conducted by Longitude. This small group of forward-thinking businesses have reached cloud maturity (with on average 70 percent or more of their applications operating in the cloud) and are outperforming their competitors.

Comprising 12 percent of respondents, the research shows that these ‘cloud masters’ are more data driven being better able to access, experiment and get insight from their business information, innovative and better able to respond to customer needs with greater relevance, speed and agility.

They’ve also seen the largest increases in productivity and competitiveness. Together, these organisations are disrupting the industries in which they operate, leaving their peers behind.

The remainder are playing catch up despite most having a cloud strategy in place and implementation underway. Interestingly, while more than one-third (35 percent) of IT executives surveyed stated that their cloud strategies are fully-developed and largely implemented, less than a fifth of this group (18 percent) can be classified as ‘cloud masters’, revealing a gap between what companies are talking about and what they are doing. In terms of cloud strategy, an even larger proportion (43 percent) reported that strategy implementation is progressing. One-fifth, however, say their strategy development for cloud is in its infancy.

Cloud is not the only technology investment that businesses are looking to make in 2018. Oracle’s research found that businesses are looking to capitalise on new, innovative technologies, such as AI, machine learning and automation in the next year. Over a quarter of IT executives felt that automation capabilities were important to the business, second only to the organization’s ability to offer multiplatform capabilities. A fifth of IT executives were found to put an importance on AI and machine learning within the organization.

Andrew Sutherland, Senior Vice President of Systems & Technology for Oracle Europe, Middle East & Africa (EMEA) & Asia Pacific (APAC) at Oracle comments: “In 2018, the gap between ‘cloud masters' and those lagging behind has the potential to widen significantly. What we are seeing is that those with the most experience are the quickest to exploit the new enterprise technologies and development methodologies and to use them to wow customers or develop competitive advantages before they become mainstream. This speed to market comes from having the experience to apply the emerging technologies to business and from having invested in the right cloud platform, infrastructure and tools. This means they can accelerate their way to competitive success – and if other businesses don’t catch up now, they could be permanently left behind.”

Although nearly two-thirds of respondents agree that cloud adoption offers the ability to better meet customer demands, enable greater collaboration, improve scalability and agility, concerns over security remain a barrier; around 54 percent feel there are major security issues in moving IT operations and data to the cloud.

Contradicting this however, a similar number say they believe application security in the cloud is better than previously. In addition, respondents with a higher level of cloud maturity and exposure revealed themselves to be more confident in their cyber security capabilities than companies less ingrained in cloud – 65 percent rated their cyber threat detection as good to very good compared to 38 percent.

Boosting the way to become data driven

The survey also shows a stark difference in analytics capabilities between those with a significant cloud exposure and those of lesser maturity. Globally, more than 60 percent of cloud-mature companies say they have an increased ability to analyze most types of data and are taking advantage of improvements in machine learning-based automation and visualization, compared to nearer a third of companies at a lower stage. Eight in 10 cloud-mature companies say they’re realising important gains from migrating data management to the cloud and able to experiment with different data models, and nearly as many say they generate better insights from their data. This is in comparison to around a half of organisations with lesser cloud maturity.

Critically, it is firms that integrate their data analysis capability into a single cloud platform that provides secure access to data in both on-premises and cloud data sources that are experiencing the greatest gains.

Organizations including Skanska, Pragmatyxs, Australian Finance Group, Benchmark, Pernod Ricard Asia, Telesoft and Total, are amongst those who have chosen Oracle Cloud platform to speed innovation and deliver elite customer experiences. Oracle’s Cloud provides organizations with everything they need to build, deploy, and extend applications and run business-critical workloads in the cloud.

Oracle and Intel partnered with Longitude Research to survey 730 C-suite and senior IT executives online in late summer 2017 with respondents coming from 13 countries including: Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, India, Mexico, Singapore, South Africa, the UAE, the UK and the US. All companies had annual revenue of $1 billion or more ((13 percent in firms earning $10 billion or more) with the following industries represented: energy/utilities, automotive, consumer packaged goods, retail, healthcare, oil and gas, financial services, insurance and telecoms, media and entertainment.

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