Is your cloud strategy achieving all your business goals? Do you know where you stack up against your peers? Here at Cisco we partnered with IDC in a cloud study of unprecedented scale of over 6,100 organizations to help our customers find exactly that out. Because cloud – private, public or hybrid – is a key ingredient of our customers’ digital transformation strategy. Cloud is no longer just a way to increase operational efficiencies, but it drives strategic business outcomes in a multicloud world where ‘there is an app for that’. However, it is a journey, and our customers are at different stages, facing very disparate sets of objectives, challenges and opportunities.

In the IDC study of 6,100 organizations of varying sizes across 31 countries, we wanted to learn more about the barriers that prevent organizations from advancing their cloud strategies. Today, we have announced the results of our IDC market research and make available to you an online quick self-assessment tool – the Cisco BCA Adoption Report.  In addition, Cisco is launching a new and enhanced set of Cloud Professional Services to help businesses navigate the multicloud maze and optimize their cloud environments.

The Multicloud Adoption Continuum

As a result of the study, IDC and Cisco view cloud adoption along a continuum. Cloud Adopters range from “Ad Hoc”— the experimental stage where organizations use cloud to fulfill an immediate need, often unauthorized by IT—all the way to those with repeatable, centrally managed cloud environments that connect stakeholders with innovative IT products and services from both internal and external providers. Organizations with the most mature, or “Optimized,” cloud strategies are the ones seeing the most significant business benefits.

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Source: IDC InfoBrief, sponsored by Cisco, Cloud Going Mainstream. All Are Trying, Some Are Benefiting; Few Are Maximizing Value. September 2016

The study confirms that cloud adoption is going mainstream; in fact, nearly 68 percent of organizations are using some form of cloud to help drive business outcomes; however, most organizations (69 percent) do not have mature cloud strategies and only 3 percent have optimized cloud strategies in place today. Increased cloud adoption is fueled by cloud native applications including Security applications and the accelerated growth of cloud-based IoT apps at 29 percent of organizations.

Organizations around the globe are dealing with increasingly diverse and complex environments as their hybrid and multicloud deployments grow. These customers want the freedom to choose the best environments and consumption models for their traditional and cloud native applications, which all drive a variety of business benefits. According to the study, the most-mature cloud organizations expect to be able to choose from multiple cloud providers based on location, policies, and governance principles. Integrating across this multicloud environment presents very real technological, operational and organizational challenges that cut across the entire IT value chain.

Additionally, according to the IDC study, obstacles to achieving greater cloud maturity include skill gaps, lack of a well-defined strategy and roadmaps, legacy siloed organizational structures and IT/LOB misalignment. And we see this every day, cloud optimization requires not only a transformation in technologies but also in people and processes. This includes the use of IT resources, IT staff skillsets, work culture, IT operating models, organizational structures, processes, and financial models.

Cisco Business Cloud Advisor Adoption Report  

Cisco is helping customers translate the findings of this study into personalized analysis and guidance. We make available to you an online quick self-assessment tool – Cisco BCA Adoption Report – that based on a brief survey allows you to receive a personalized review of your cloud adoption along with benchmarking information and preliminary vendor agnostic guidance enabled by IDC.

New Cloud Professional Services

More importantly, to help businesses navigate the multicloud maze and optimize their cloud environments while making these market research findings actionable, Cisco is launching a new set of Cloud Professional Services. These services will help our clients bridge the change management and skillset gaps they may be facing as they accelerate their Hybrid IT transformation strategies while adopting DevOps methodologies and abating organizational silos to foster cloud native initiatives.

Available now, these Cisco Professional Services will include:

  • New multicloud management and orchestration services for Cisco CloudCenter (resulting from the CliQr acquisition) empowering customers to model once, deploy and manage anywhere.
  • Enhanced application and cloud migration services to automate and de-risk the complexity involved in onboarding and migrating to the cloud.
  • New Cloud Acceleration Services that accelerate the design and deployment of both traditional private clouds and cloud-native solutions such as OpenStack and PaaS.
  • New IT Transformation services focused on DevOps change management initiatives that help align business processes and capabilities enabling customers to integrate and optimize across both traditional and DevOps environments and teams.

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Cisco plans to offer an integrated strategy workshop combining the Cisco Domain Ten® Service with Cisco Business Cloud Advisor Workshop. The Cisco and channel partner-delivered workshop will help organizations identify cloud adoption gaps and benchmarks, continuously improve their multicloud environments and facilitate alignment between IT and line of business (LOB) stakeholders. The workshop will also help organizations better measure the potential impact of cloud adoption in their IT organizations across a broad range of key performance indicators.

These new services and integrated workshops will also provide channel partners with opportunities to either resell Cisco services, or combine their own complementary services and work with Cisco to deliver a holistic solution to customers, bringing the right combination of skills, capabilities and offers together to help organizations achieve their business outcomes.

There has never been a better time to reimagine your cloud strategies.

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Scott Clark

Vice President, Advanced Services

Cloud & Networking Services