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2016: The year the cloud conversation changes

Gerard Sillars, Vice President for Asia Pacific, Alcatel-Lucent Enterprise | March 17, 2016
Back in 2008 Oracle's Larry Ellison said, "The interesting thing about cloud computing is that we've redefined cloud to include everything that we already do. The computer industry is the only industry that is more fashion-driven than women's fashion."

This vendor-written piece has been edited by Executive Networks Media to eliminate product promotion, but readers should note it will likely favour the submitter's approach.

Back in 2008, Oracle's Larry Ellison said, "The interesting thing about cloud computing is that we've redefined cloud to include everything that we already do. The computer industry is the only industry that is more fashion-driven than women's fashion."

According to IDC's latest Worldwide Semiannual Public Cloud Services Guide, spending on public cloud services in Asia Pacific is set to double - almost six times the rate of overall IT spending growth by 2019. New solutions born on the cloud and traditional solutions migrating to the cloud will increasingly pull more customers and their data to the cloud.

Customers are increasingly becoming confused by the range of technical solutions available and so in many cases, they are choosing to continue to "sweat the existing assets" for longer and until the future becomes clearer. At this point, customers are considering how they can reduce complexity and risk associated with their technology purchases and which business model will best serve them; this will include investing in new technology with a capital outlay (CAPEX) or investing in an OPEX (pay as you go) model via the cloud.

Cloud Viewed as a Business Model

Rather than some amazing technical advancement, the cloud has become a business model. What we realized in 2015 is that businesses are not interested in the back-end that enables the cloud. Instead, they are more interested in how the cloud business model aligns with their business.

2015 was the year that the conversation started to change. At ALE, we no longer talk to our customers and partners about how technology can improve their business, but rather about how we can align our business to their business, leveraging the cloud. This train of thought is set to continue progressing in 2016, alongside the continued growth of customers that want to talk about the cloud.

IT Decision Makers not only IT Managers

Similar to what we mentioned in the beginning that businesses today are more interested in how the cloud business model aligns with businesses, we are also seeing the increasing trend of business owners influencing IT purchases. Although we are not seeing that yet in the field where ALE operates - at the networking or 'plumbing' level of the internet, we believe it would not be long before all IT decisions are jointly made by IT managers, Chief Financial Officers, Human Resources teams and Chief Executive Officers.

IT Managers are increasingly mindful of the impact that IT decisions have on the wider business. They are evolving their teams to become less silo-ed and more aware of business needs from a commercial perspective. Every decision made needs to have relevant returns on investment. This is a direct result of the cloud conversation evolving from a technology focus to a business model discussion.

 

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