ADAPT Cloud Migration Study 2019 and lessons from the AWS Summit

Australian cloud migration exceeds projections


By 2021, two thirds (67%) of Australian IT workloads will be cloud-based (public/private/hybrid), up from less than half (46%) today.


ADAPT’s 2019 Cloud Migration Study presents key findings and trends from Australia’s topmost IT leaders on the latest in cloud migration. These numbers exceed recent projections, from ADAPT and other industry observers, on the growth rate of cloud. Cloud is now mainstream.

Another key finding is that Australian organisations are working to move more of their IT budgets from back office ‘Run’ (currently 62%) to front office ‘Transform’ (currently 17%). Executives tell us they need to free up funds from day-to-day Run activities and invest in technologies that improve business outcomes for improved operational effectiveness.

Key Advice from ADAPT and CIOs at AWS Executive Forum

ADAPT was an active participant at the recent AWS Executive Forum, part of Amazon Web Services Summit in Sydney. ADAPT analysts held numerous one-on-one meetings with C-suite executives to discuss their cloud strategies and related IT issues. A recurrent theme was how cloud can make legacy systems a thing of the past. Importantly, cloud is also making legacy thinking a thing of the past.

The conversations confirmed many of the findings from ADAPT’s 2019 Cloud Migration Study and other research. They also provided further key insights into the shifting dynamics and priorities of this extremely competitive environment.

ADAPT has distilled the experiences of the CIOs we spoke to at the AWS Summit and the findings of our research into key snippets of advice.


Cloud is the best way to future-proof your business operations

Cloud can save money, or it can cost money, depending on your metrics. But the real benefits are greater flexibility and agility.

• Stop thinking of cloud and on-premise as competing environments. Develop a single management philosophy and strategy to drive substantial and very visible benefits.

• Consider cloud for testing and trialling alternatives to legacy applications. Consolidate disparate data resources in the cloud for efficient and accurate outcomes-based analysis.

• Take stock of your current cloud environment and consolidate where necessary. Attendees at ADAPT’s March 2019 Connected Cloud & Data Centre Edge event indicated they are managing on average five or six clouds. Without proper management, applications sprawl can easily become cloud sprawl, which is already an increasing issue for many organisations.


Cloud enables you to be more adventurous

Despite the strong move to cloud, many Australian organisations’ appetite for risk is decreasing. At the same time many of the benefits of investing in emerging technologies are becoming more apparent. Many of these are cloud based.

• Over half of Australian organisations are waiting for technologies to be proven before adoption or innovating in house. Australian organisations need to be more adventurous.

• ADAPT’s research shows CIOs are lining up their IT investment priorities around today’s emerging – but increasingly proven – technologies. Pay special attention to those with an AI focus – these are especially useful in enabling new operational models and increasing efficiencies.

• Seek low hanging fruit that generate evidence-based outcomes which are aligned with the business priorities set by your executive leadership teams.


Cloud can help improve the Human Experience (HX) and help you address the skills shortage

Skills shortages are increasing. If you do not proactively invest in improved workplace technologies and processes, you run the risk that your existing staff will leave, and prospective staff will not be attracted to your organisation.

• Attracting and retaining staff and customers are two key business priorities for the majority of organisations surveyed as part of ADAPT’s CIO Edge event in February 2019. The experiences you provide to employees and customers can be your main competitive differentiator.

• Understand what experiences your employees (current and prospective) and customers expect. Invest in technologies and policies that either meet or come close to meeting those expectations.

• Think about your user experience expectations and how you can be part of it. It is time for an ‘experience first, technology second’ approach and mindset.


Cloud aligned investment decisions support your organisation’s business outcomes

How and where the information is being processed is less important than ensuring you have a holistic approach to your total processing environment. This simplifies management and makes strategic architectural decisions easier.

• Regard your in-house and cloud environments as a coherent whole, and view them through a single pane of glass.

• Improving operational effectiveness is impossible without first getting rid of legacy systems and entrenched mindsets and processes.

• Not all cloud providers are created equal. Understand their strengths and weaknesses to effectively align them to your requirements.

• Never lose sight of where you are trying to get to or what outcome you are trying to achieve. There is rarely a one-size fits all solution and cloud will not be the answer to everything.


The Bottom Line

Cloud is an enabling technology on many levels. It encourages strategic thinking, it facilitates a range of new applications, and it is the platform on which many innovative ideas can be tested and proven. Previous doubts about cloud’s performance, cost-effectiveness and security have dissipated as cloud has evolved to become a viable alternative to in-house processing.

In many ways it is superior, primarily because of its greater flexibility and resilience. The single environment of cloud also improves access to broader data sets.

Most enterprises have embraced cloud computing but are still struggling with the best ways to implement it and move beyond the constraints of legacy processing. This can be best achieved with a holistic strategy that encompasses all processing platforms and all applications that run on them as a single environment.



Matt Boon – Strategic Research Director at ADAPT

Peter Hind – Senior Analyst at ADAPT

ADAPT delivers advisory services built on knowledge, relationships and trust to equip the leaders of corporate Australia with the examples, inspiration and competencies they need to gain advantage.


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