Is the cloud also for the public sector?
By Lim Jee Yen, CrimsonLogic 27-Jun-2012
Any doubt on the longevity of cloud would be quickly dispelled with the day-to-day reality in our personal and work lives on how information is being accessed and how it changes the way we live in this fast-changing world.
With easy instantaneous access to personal emails and corporate services on any mobile devices, it is clear that cloud computing will soon become the de facto platform for the delivery of all types of services in our everyday lives.
Cloud computing had begun and will continue to resonate within the industry, including the public sector. According to Gartner's Executive Programs Worldwide Survey, more than 2,000 CIOs from 38 industries representing over US$160 billion in corporate and public sector IT spending were surveyed: cloud computing was ranked as their top priority. CIOs expect 43% of their peers to have the bulk of their IT operations running in the cloud by 2015, a massive increase from three percent in 2011.
Businesses ascending to cloud
Why are businesses adopting cloud? With reducing IT operation cost a mandate for many companies, getting onto cloud becomes a natural progression. Many seeking to contain ever increasing IT costs and hoping to shift their IT capital expenses from a capex mode to a pay-per-use-model, sees cloud computing as a way to align their IT expenses to the growth of the business.
In addition to reducing IT costs, it also provides business the agility to rollout IT services faster and scale its system to reach the desired markets, without the traditional constraints of long equipment deployment time while trying to forecast the computing power needed. This allows businesses to focus on core competencies and strengthen their ability to keep up with the ever-changing business environment.
Operational efficiency and manpower reduction can also be achieved with cloud computing. Separately, cloud computing does not require exorbitant upfront capital outlay, meaning cloud deployment need not be heavily reliant on setting up a data center -- with its limited space and spiraling energy costs, to host the IT infrastructure and applications.
IT computing resources now can be acquired on a short term need basis and grow with the success of the business. This lower startup cost often encourages experimentation on new innovative products and services, and also provide the necessary agility to survive in a challenging business environment.
With cloud technology, enterprise-grade applications which seek to improve the productivity and effectiveness of businesses are now made widely available on a utility basis. These on-demand systems offer full features functionalities to small businesses and scale to meet the needs of multinational business that spans across geographical territories with thousands of users.
With utility-based pricing model as its foundation, cloud computing provides all participating businesses a rich set of business functionalities and processes that not only streamlines user experience with greater mobility, but also provided the budget-conscious businesses a means of using these sets of shared services and applications that they would have otherwise be unable to afford on their own.
Cloud computing represents a sea of change on how businesses handle computing resources within "January 21, 2011: Gartner Executive Programs Worldwide Survey" of more than 2,000 CIOs identifies cloud computing as top technology priority for CIOs in 2011 their organizations. It has revolutionized businesses -- deriving cost advantages, enhanced flexibility and improved employee efficiency.
In addition, access to company systems and productivity tools from outside the office allow employees to enjoy greater mobility, but more importantly, it empowers employees with the most updated information to meet market demands.