Cloud is now a viable option for many IT projects, requiring infrastructure and operations (I&O) leaders to expand the scope of systems as they actively consider those that are cloud-based.
This is the first of four major I&O impacts identified by Gartner from its 2015 CIO Survey, "Flipping to Digital Leadership: The 2015 CIO Agenda”, which polled more than 2,800 CIOs that accounted for $397 billion of IT spend and $202.5 billion of I&O spend.
"The survey results show that, for most CIOs, public cloud is an option for projects, but only a first consideration for a small minority," says Dave Russell, vice president and distinguished analyst, Gartner.
"I&O leaders have been more protective of their existing infrastructure and, in many cases, have been the biggest obstacle to cloud-based solutions, often resorting to cloud-washing as an excuse to not seriously pursue a true cloud-based solution.
“Instead, I&O leaders should institute a 'cloud-first' consideration for every project on an application-by-application basis."
According to the survey, nine percent of users today are not even considering cloud computing for software-as-a-service (SaaS) projects, a number that increases to 15 percent for infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) projects.
While a larger percentage view cloud as something to consider on an exception basis, nearly half have quickly moved from viewing cloud as a concept to a viable option.
"While the best solution for the business may indeed be an on-premises, non-cloud deployment model, I&O teams need to include all options in order to make the best use of available resources and to ensure that service requirements are met," adds Mike Chuba, research vice president, Gartner.
"Rather than ignoring the cloud outright, or only reluctantly considering it, evaluating all implementation models at the outset of a project can help save time and produce better results."
Three further impacts were revealed by the survey:
Firstly, the mobile delivery and experience of IT systems, both for internal and external customers, is now a top concern in system design, requiring I&O organisations to shift priorities and skill sets.
The CIO survey responses indicate that mobile devices are now the primary or secondary interface for a significant number of IT investments.
The survey also showed that 71 percent of CIOs felt an increasing need for context-aware services.