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Who is faster: clouds vs it market?
The demand for cloud computing in Russia is real. Just a few years ago, the Russian cloud market was only heating up and now it is growing several times faster than general IT market. Since 2011, the popularity of clouds in mature markets increases by 44% annually, while of the IT industry as a whole — only by 23%. According to Orange, in 2016 it will amount to 19 billion rubles and even now it occupies about 13% of the market of IT services.
According to a BSA study held in 24 countries, Russia is the 17th country in the ranking on preparedness for cloud computing, ahead of the rapidly developing markets of India, China and Brazil. The fast growth of cloud solutions in our country is related to the facts that companies consider them primarily as a tool to reduce costs and optimize through more efficient use of IT infrastructure and flexible payment models (pay as you go) and that cloud solutions provide fast change implementation and additional business growth opportunities in a highly competitive environment. At the same time, one of the main criteria for choosing a cloud service is the customer's trust in terms of security and protection of data and infrastructure they outsource.
Examples of cooperation between ICL Services and customers show that retail and financial sectors are currently taking the strongest interest in cloud services. However, this cross-section can be partly different from market researches on the Russian cloud market as a whole.
The company's own research* on the maturity of regional Russian markets and preparedness for cloud services has shown that about 35% of surveyed companies have already considered the transition to cloud-based solutions or are actively applying this technology. Representatives of companies with over 500 employees are more loyal to cloud services; about 20% of them are currently choosing a reliable supplier and have their own requirements. Thos include convenient integration of existing systems and information security provision.
The analysis showed that most companies have no idea of the cloud environment diversity. Nearly 22% did not know what to choose. The market of cloud technologies traditionally defines the following service delivery models: IaaS (Infrastructure as a Service), SaaS (Software as a Service) and PaaS (Platform as a Service). Other types of services are often outlined: BPaaS (Business Process as a Service), DaaS (Desktop as a Service), SecaaS (Security as a Service), BaaS (Backend as a Service), DRaaS (Disaster Recovery as a Service), CCaaS (Contact Centre as a Service).
However, as the ICL Cloud Platform Development Head Alexey Shipov notes, the most popular service by far is IaaS. SaaS is second, and here the ability to integrate with existing customer IT infrastructure and provide data security is important. "Corporate customers that develop and deploy business applications independently are more and more interested in PaaS enabling them to significantly accelerate the deployment of business applications through testing automation and built-in deployment tools while providing high level of stability and scalability," says Shipov.
Despite the growing popularity of clouds, many difficulties impede the transition to cloud services. The chart below shows those mentioned by CIOs and heads of IT services/departments of large and small companies (under and over 500 employees, respectively):
Apparently, companies with a small number of employees are more concerned about the complexity of transition to clouds. During the survey, about 10% of them indicated that access to clouds will force them to change their business models and 6% fear that cloud computing will change the way they interact with customers and suppliers. Therefore, as Alexey Shipov points out, careful planning of the transition to cloud-based platforms is extremely important in order to achieve the required simplicity, accessibility and effectiveness offered by cloud environments.
In 2016 companies of all sizes will be primarily focused on cutting IT budgets while maintaining their high performance at a lower cost. At the same time, as all modern companies develop, they face the problem of the increasing demand for IT resources. In such a situation, the choice of cloud technologies that enable the modernization of approaches to IT infrastructure management with new technologies, high level of standardization, and flexibility of implemented solutions and ease of scaling appears to be the most appropriate business decision.
*The study was held in the form of a survey with elements of telephone interviews from August 25 to September 25, 2015.
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