Cloud collaboration services adoption in Asia Pacific has surpassed that in North America and Europe.
According to Forresters's Forrsights Combined Budgets and Business Decision Maker survey, Q4 2012, 61 percent of Asia Pacific organisations are currently using or actively planning to implement software-as-a-service (SaaS) for collaboration. This is significantly higher than that in North America (42 percent) and Europe (48 percent).
Forrester's analyst Nupur Singh Andley attributed the increased rate of adoption of cloud-based collaboration services to three factors. The first is the consumerisation of IT and end-user communication preferences. The second is the easy implementation and maintenance of cloud-based collaboration services, allowing organisations to quickly operationalise new sites and individual accounts with minimal IT effort. The final factor is the wide availability of service options, which are competitively priced and packaged to align with the customers' needs, from service providers including Orange Business Services and Verizon Business.
Considerations before jumping into the cloud
Even though it is tempting to adopt cloud-based collaboration services, Andley highlighted a few points that infrastructure and operations (I&O) professionals should consider before adoption.
Firstly, I&O professionals need to evaluate the communication priorities of their organisation and understand the existing infrastructure before designing an implementation plan. By doing so, they can anticipate the integration challenges and overcome them, thereby contributing to a smoother implementation of the services.
I&O professionals need to also prioritise collaboration workloads to be deployed in the cloud, advised Andley. To do so, they need to consider if there is a quantifiable advantage of moving a workload to the cloud such as cost savings and ROI timeframes. I&O professionals also need to evaluate if the cloud-based collaboration services will improve the quality of users' communication experiences and ease peer collaboration, as well as increase employees' productivity.
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