5 skills businesses are looking for to improve in the cloud

by bold-lichterman

Cloud computing has resolutely changed the way we consume and operate IT or application resources and make them available to as many people as possible. In the world of the general public, the parallel is often drawn with ready-to-use online solutions for storing and sharing files (Google’s GDrive, Box, Dropbox, Apple’s iCloud, etc.), community exchanges ( Facebook, LinkedIn, Viadeo, Twitter, Snapchat…) or even video sharing (YouTube, Dailymotion). In the B2B world, more and more companies are also using it to support their operating methods: they are integrating it not only at the heart of the digital innovations that they project but also of new models, in particular of services, that they ambition.

According to the MARKESS study, “any new company being created today integrates cloud computing into its operational prerequisites so that these solutions play a key role in making their core business work. There are many examples, from GAFA which not only rely on cloud computing to operate their own business model but also market solutions that refer to it, to new digital stars like Uber or Netflix. All of these companies have one thing in common: they understood that cloud computing was at the heart of innovation and the creation of new models. It gives them essential agility in a highly competitive economy. “

Double-digit growth

In 2015, 91% of the 110 business and IT decision-makers surveyed (working mainly in large companies and mid-size companies) had already implemented or plan to implement innovative digital projects using cloud computing solutions . The innovative digital projects referred to give rise to new uses based on disrupted economic, financial or organizational models. They are most often characterized by different approaches in their design and deployment.

Building on this dynamic, the French market for cloud computing solutions (SaaS, PaaS, IaaS) and associated services is developing at a double-digit growth rate. Estimated at 4.9 billion euros in 2015 by MARKESS, it should be close to 7 billion euros in 2017 with a predominant share devoted to applications in Saas mode (Software as a Service).

The services associated with the implementation of these solutions also play a crucial role when critical and strategic environments are involved and account for a significant share of this market. The segments in high demand are in particular:

  • Advice on defining functional and technical needs, migration, support for change, compliance with security and / or legal rules.
  • Value-added services (configuration, integration, managed services, operating services for environments hosted in clouds, etc.).

However, using these cloud computing solutions is not always easy because it requires mastering new areas (expertise). In 2015, 84% of business and IT decision-makers surveyed by MARKESS also expressed specific skills requirements to carry out their projects based on cloud computing solutions.

5 skills to master

The use of cloud computing is causing organizational change and indeed leading to new requirements. Many questions arise as to the skills and resources required to activate these services, whether they are networks, associated commitments (SLAs, data confidentiality, security, disaster recovery plan in the event of failure, etc.) or even adaptation of the organization and existing environments.

In 2015, between 30% and 40% of business and IT decision-makers questioned more specifically highlighted needs in:

  • Architects capable of defining, designing and architecting innovative uses that will call on cloud services and which will be developed in new ways (see DevOps) who can also call on cloud solutions (see PaaS solutions – Platform as a Service).
  • Security experts and lawyers to ensure technical and legal aspects related to data protection and confidentiality, access and identity management, data backup, regulatory compliance, etc.
  • Change managers because the operating models imposed by cloud computing imply a different organizational approach to administering services. This transformation requires support.
  • Managers of outsourced service contracts: the proliferation of contracts with different providers of cloud computing solutions (IaaS, PaaS, SaaS) requires precise monitoring in order to avoid any incident on the financial, technical (SLAs) and legal aspects .

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These skills are all the more in demand as business and digital departments are most often at the initiative of innovative digital projects. These departments express such needs because they are aware that they must now master the technical, financial and legal aspects related to the use of the cloud computing solutions underlying these projects. Even though most of them rely on their information system management to support them in this process, a significant portion of the budgets allocated to cloud computing, and in particular to SaaS applications, is carried directly by these business divisions. . With cloud computing, the share of “shadow IT (1)” would be much higher than currently published figures. In some companies, MARKESS estimates that it would amount to more than 2/3 of all the budgets devoted to such solutions!

1. Shadow IT (sometimes Rogue IT) is a term frequently used to designate information and communication systems produced and implemented within organizations without approval from the information systems management. (Source: Wikipedia)