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IT usage report shows cloud-based apps are a reality in the enterprise

Centrix Software, a leading expert in workspace management, today revealed results of its latest IT end-user report. The cloud-based application (app) usage research shows that cloud-based apps are a reality in the enterprise, with nearly 90 per cent of today's organizations using them. However, it's also highlighted there's still much confusion around how the move to the cloud should be prioritized, which app types are most suitable, who pays for cloud apps, and what the top risks are.

Centrix Software commissioned global technology market research business, Vanson Bourne, to undertake an independent survey of 125 UK-based IT directors and CIOs, across a number of commercial industry sectors and the public sector.

The research highlights that responsibility for selecting, purchasing and managing cloud-based apps is increasingly shared between IT and business users - completely changing the way end-user computing is delivered. Business users are now involved in 53 per cent of cloud app decisions (17 per cent are solely responsible for app decisions and 36 per cent share responsibility with IT) - and hold direct responsibility for 33 per cent of the budget, with a further 27 per cent managed jointly with IT.

These findings are backed up by analyst firm Gartner, which states that more than 25 per cent of IT spending is already outside of the control of CIOs - and that's predicted to grow to 50 per cent by 2017. The report confirmed CIOs are concerned that the diversification of cloud responsibility raises data and content security and governance issues; with 61 per cent saying that security of organizational content and data was their top concern, and 82 per cent putting this in their top three.

This report helps anyone trying to understand the challenges and opportunities presented by cloud-based apps, and measure their own organization against the results. There were several more key findings, including the following: 

  • Cloud usage is growing - over three quarters (78 per cent) of organizations have a pro-active plan for cloud adoption in 2015
  • For more than a third of all CIOs the growing cost of cloud subscriptions, managing the increasing number of cloud apps in use, and duplication of app functionality were in their top three concerns.
  • Office productivity is the top cloud app category in use across all types of organizations, whereas newer app categories are not widely adopted in the cloud (for example, only 2 per cent ranked marketing automation as their top solution and 6 per cent put it in their top three)
  • Shadow IT was another worry, with 53 per cent of CIOs ranking this in their top three concerns
  • Tracking and measuring usage is a big challenge. 38 per cent of organizations use the admin function of each separate cloud app to track and measure their usage (meaning a typical 5,000 user organization would have to log-on to between 65 and 130 apps to understand usage)
  • The financial services and government sectors are the furthest behind in cloud app adoption, with 20 per cent of CIOs saying they had no cloud-based app usage (and, 24 per cent of financial services CIOs not planning to focus on cloud apps at all in 2015)

Commenting on the results, Lisa Hammond, CEO of Centrix Software said, "Today's business users, familiar with choosing, downloading and using apps on their personal devices, can be just as cloud-aware as their more technical colleagues. This is driving a radical change in the way that end-user computing is delivered. The challenge for CIOs is how to manage a cloud environment that's not in their control and that they regard as a huge security risk."

Lisa continued, "Today's IT leaders need to monitor, analyze, prioritize and evaluate rates of cloud app adoption so they can understand cloud app usage and consumption. It's only those who have accurate information about cloud usage who will be able to spot cloud app trends, proactively forecast demand and identify the business value of migrating apps to the cloud or introducing new types of cloud apps. Usage-based business intelligence analytics for IT has to be part of the solution to this cloud confusion."

To discover more about the findings, download a full copy of the white paper: ‘The Centrix Software IT End-User Usage Report - Cloud Based Application Usage' (Winter 2015).
Published Friday, January 30, 2015 7:16 AM by David Marshall
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