Firms concerned about managing cloud systems when using their data

Ravi Shankar, senior vice president and chief marketing officer of Denodo

Denodo, a data management organization, released the findings of its sixth annual cloud usage survey which revealed that cloud adoption is continuing its rapid climb, with more than half (54%) of participants stating they are either at an intermediate or advanced level of cloud usage. Cloud-enabled business transformation has become a priority as organizations face global supply chain issues, cybersecurity threats, and geopolitical instability.

What is the state of cloud storage among organizations?

While organizations of all sizes and vertical markets are turning to the cloud to ensure flexibility and resilience in the face of these challenges, SMEs have driven investment in cloud infrastructure services to support workload migration, data storage services, and cloud-native application development. Download the complimentary findings here.

Cloud-based data warehouses, data lakes, and lake houses played a prominent role in 2021, and was cited as both a top initiative by respondents (48%) and a top use case (57%).

Hybrid cloud continues to be the deployment model of choice. However, this year, the gap between hybrid cloud and private cloud is dramatically wider. Hybrid cloud was chosen by almost twice the number of respondents (37.5%), compared with pure public cloud, at 20%.

This year, it is clear that hybrid cloud is less a “choice” but a “necessity” and indicates that companies are not completely getting rid of their on-premises systems even if they have increased their cloud footprint. Companies have good reasons for deploying this mixed deployment style, regulatory compliance among them, which may be why they are opting not to simply abandon on-premises systems when the technology landscape changes.

What are the major barriers to cloud adoption?

As it relates to these survey respondent companies being data-driven, nearly four in five respondents (79%) cited complexity of data integration, data accessibility, and accommodating different data formats as the primary barrier to becoming data-driven followed by the lack of analytical skills and resources to turn raw data into insights (62%).

Data scientists struggled as well. Often cited for spending more time finding and preparing data than they do analyzing it, 44% were unable to find, access, and analyze half or more of their data after adopting cloud tech and only 17% were able to leverage 75% their data.

The role of IT in the cloud modernization journey has also changed. In 2020, the focus for tech professionals was choosing the appropriate cloud provider and managing the migration.

But in 2021, these IT teams are more focused on receiving the training needed to take their firm’s cloud systems to the next level (as per 31.3% of respondents), while other activities such as selecting cloud provider and planning for cloud migrations still remain important.

How are companies leveraging the cloud?

Companies are using cloud for various use cases with the most popular being reporting and dashboards, and self-service BI and ad-hoc analytics; however, respondents anticipate a shift to data virtualization, data preparation, data quality and blending in the future.

These use cases paint a vivid portrait of where many organizations are with respect to their cloud journeys. First, it reflects the fact that the business stakeholders within organizations are ready to get better use out of their data, and second, it shows that organizations are now looking to maximize their cloud systems with robust cloud-based repositories.

Having migrated workloads to the cloud, the next step for firms is to find a place to store the new data they then begin to acquire. Data-management approaches like logical data fabric help accommodate legacy systems so that they can work in tandem with cloud systems.

What were the thoughts of Denodo on the study?

Commenting about the research study, Ravi Shankar, senior vice president and chief marketing officer of Denodo said, “Audiences continue to express their need for real-time data so it is no surprise that availability, with regard to data integration, management, and analytics in the cloud, is not only ‘nice to have,’ but critical to becoming data-driven.”

“This is true across all configurations, but the reality is most organizations are unable to find, access, and analyze half or more of their data after adopting cloud technologies.”

“That may be why the overwhelming majority of organizations (93%) stated that they were using, evaluating, or considering leveraging cloud-based data integration, management, and analytics including powerful technologies, such as data virtualization and logical data fabric to provide seamless, real-time access across both on-premises and cloud systems.”

When it comes to choosing cloud service providers, Microsoft Azure and Amazon Web Services (AWS) continue to dominate the market, AWS (44.6%) has jumped ahead of Azure (26.2%) with a substantial lead, after Azure has kept just ahead of AWS for two consecutive years. Google Cloud Platform (GCP) came in as a third most popular option (8%), according to the survey. In contrast, Alibaba showed a bump from 1.4% in 2021 to 3.6% this year.