Cloud technology being used by a majority of local services, Socitm finds

Cloud technologies are already in place or being piloted in 90% of local public service provider organisations, who responded to a Socitm survey.

The ‘IT Trends Survey: Cloud computing services’ reports on the state of cloud computing procurement and adoption across local services.

The survey, which was carried out in November 2014, questioned 103 organisations, most of which were local authorities but also included local public service providers and organisations in the third sector.

Of the respondents, 90% are either implementing cloud technologies or piloting such systems; two-thirds reported that they have some applications in the cloud and are pursuing further systems; 21% said that they are at the stage of either investigating the use of the cloud or planning a pilot.

In addition, 4% have decided against cloud investment and a further 4% say they have already invested significantly in cloud services.

Of the reasons limiting cloud investment or progress, data security was named as the most concerning, with 70% of respondents reporting that data protection is inhibiting take-up; around half added that there are applications and IT services that they feel do not require a cloud provider.

Examples of this include person-related data, emergency services and control systems, or those which are already integrated into systems outside of the cloud.

Secure email and linkages to public sector networks were also specifically cited as excluded matters.

Around 60% of respondents said that there are no restrictions to adopting the cloud from their respective procurement environment.

The survey found that in terms of perceived benefits, those in the early piloting stage tend to see a wide range of benefits including cost savings, business modernisation, improve flexibility, capacity and scalability.

Whilst those who are already heavily invested in the cloud have a narrower range of benefits from the cloud, but value those specific bonuses relatively higher than those in an earlier investment stage.

Socitm head of research, Andy Hopkirk said: “service providers have work to do in convincing many Socitm members that their personal and corporate business risks are not increased by using cloud services to an extent that outweighs the benefits.”

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