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Do you trust your provider farther than you can throw them? Cloud priorities shifting in post-COVID world – IDC

Companies focus on 'broader' ecosystem

Organisations are shifting their priorities in cloud procurement as they look beyond the COVID-19 pandemic, with "trust" now apparently the biggest issue.

These trends were identified in IDC's Q3 2021 BuyerView Cloud Pulse survey, released today, which found that almost 70 per cent of more than 1,300 respondents indicated they expect to return to pre-pandemic levels for business operations and functions within a year.

But as well as looking to more flexible delivery models, contracts and solutions from their cloud service providers, the survey respondents said the leading attribute they are now looking for in a cloud platform is "trust".

While this might traditionally be linked to service satisfaction levels, it also now includes elements such as reputational risk and environmental, social, and corporate governance, according to IDC.

Partly, this is a reflection of how important cloud platforms have become to corporate IT service delivery, with IDC stating that over the next three years the primary role of the IT department will be to govern the effective use of cloud resources by their companies.

As cloud continues to account for a larger part of the enterprise IT mix, the entire service supply chain will inevitably start to attract greater scrutiny for its environmental footprint and other factors including risk.

The importance of trust is also demonstrated by growing interest in predictable pricing, security solutions, and performance and resiliency of cloud services, according to IDC, as well as the ability to be clear and open about business and service shifts and compliance with those environmental, social, and corporate governance goals.

Looking beyond trust, enterprises who responded to the survey still showed a preference towards cloud solutions that offer best-in-breed applications and services delivered through the channel and partnerships.

Unsurprisingly, customers said they also wanted flexibility in the way these applications are deployed and consumed, with a choice of hosting on-premises or in the public cloud.

IDC predicted that by next year, 40 per cent of the Global 2000 biggest companies will be focusing their cloud selection on commercial goals rather than just IT requirements, placing more emphasis on multi-clouds.

In fact, much of the predicted $1.3 trillion future value chain will be driven by a channel of partners and suppliers selling different vendor's products and services, IDC claimed, and vendor perception will be linked to these providers rather a single vendor's cloud application stack.

Many current cloud vendors performed below customer expectations when it came to trust, the survey found, and one of the main reasons customers gave for leaving a vendor was if it had only a limited mix of products and services.

A lack of data sovereignty options was another reason that respondents gave for ditching cloud providers, with European privacy law the GDPR cited as a prime example, but there are a growing number of requirements worldwide for data to remain in a particular country, according to IDC.

For this reason, it predicts that 80 per cent of enterprises face having to restructure their data governance processes over the next several years due to regional divergences in data privacy, security and government mandates. ®

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