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Compliance, scalability drive CIOs to cloud

The rapid maturity of the cloud is drawing decision-makers to hosted environments at an extremely fast pace, especially as the private sector becomes increasingly competitive due to the constant emergence of new firms and companies expanding their offerings. In an effort to get a leg up on rival organizations, many executives are turning to the cloud, as using hosted applications can introduce a number of new opportunities.

A recent study of more than 300 CIOs and other business executives by Dimensional Research highlighted the reasons why the private sector is adopting cloud computing, noting that reducing costs and lessening maintenance requirements were among the top contributors.

"Our survey findings show business value is an overwhelming driver for cloud adoption among business executives, while CIOs cite a range of reasons for moving to the cloud," said Diane Hagglund, senior research analyst for Dimensional Research. "Better compliance and increased competitive advantage were also identified as key drivers."

What is pushing executives to the cloud?
The study found that 58 percent of CIOs are adopting cloud servers because doing so makes it easier to meet compliance requirements. Another 53 percent said their firm is using cloud applications because they provide better value than traditional solutions, while 51 percent said the tools give their organization a competitive advantage.

While these advantages are not sparse in the workplace, eliminating the use of antiquated software was a common reason for migrating to the cloud. In fact, about 14 percent of decision-makers said their mission-critical legacy solutions have not been updated in more than four years. Approximately 28 percent said they were not sure if these on-premise applications even met compliance regulations.

A separate study by North Bridge Venture Partners revealed that cloud scalability is among the top drivers for migrating to hosted environments. This is especially important as companies become increasingly burdened by growing volumes of information and need flexible architectures capable of supporting agile operations.

"Businesses are embracing the cloud and realizing it offers tremendous value and advantages over on-premise applications," said Keri Brooke, vice president of marketing at Host Analytics. "This new research reinforces the industry's shift to a more modern, effective and safe way of doing business."

Because the cloud is constantly evolving, decision-makers should adopt hosted applications before the tools are crucial to keeping pace, not necessarily gaining a competitive advantage.

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