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Survey shows risk, costs and skills shortage hinder cloud adoption


Mark Say Managing Editor

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Concerns over risk and security, costs and a lack of skills are providing barriers for public sector organisations in moving to the cloud, according to the results of a new survey.

Research company Censuswide carried out the survey of leaders and IT professionals from more than 300 public sector organisations for cloud platform provider UKCloud.

The survey also confirmed that, despite the barriers, most organisations still want to increase their use of cloud services.

But one of the key features to emerge was a perception of risk in becoming over-reliant on cloud. 85% of respondents agreed that their organisation was reluctant to move workloads to the cloud because of worries over it going wrong, vendor lock-in and compliance issues.

Along with this were concerns over the security of sensitive data, with 49% , rising to almost two-thirds of local authorities, saying they would not consider using public cloud for their most secure and sensitive systems. 45% would not want to move traditional IT environments that were not cloud native.

Affordability emerged as a significant impediment for 85% of respondents, combined with 82% pointing to a misalignment of cloud costs with their budgets. 54% believed that cloud is more expensive than on-premise traditional applications.

A lack of skills and resource in areas such as DevOps and automation also stood out as a significant challenge, with 83% identifying this as an issue. This makes it difficult for organisations to build and operate cloud native applications.

Strong attraction

In the face of these barriers there is still a strong attraction to the cloud: 87% agreed they would move all of their IT to cloud systems if a perfect solution existed, and a majority indicated that their organisations had a policy for some use of public cloud. Only 6% said they would not use public cloud.

There was also a widespread recognition, accounting for 81% of respondents, that cloud is an enabler for a broader transformation taking in technologies such as artificial intelligence and the internet of things.

In the conclusion of a report on the survey, UKCloud’s chief technology officer Leighton James comments: “The challenges identified by this survey indicate that public sector organisations must embrace plurality and diversity in their cloud strategy.

“Multi-cloud is the best way to assemble the optimal mix of private cloud, public cloud and secure cloud services to suit their technical, commercial and compliance requirements.

“In order to drive the next wave of cloud adoption, the govtech community is increasingly committed to simplifying hybrid cloud and cloud operations across multiple clouds and platforms.”

Image by Michael Jastremski,, CC BY-SA 2.0 via Wikimedia Commons

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