The global cloud communications market has grown to the point where most companies are well aware of the features and benefits the technology has to offer. Now that the cloud has become a household name, businesses are becoming more selective in how they choose their services.
“It is what’s offered, how fast it’s delivered, and how well it’s supported that will make the difference in selecting a provider,” explained Delphi President Gary Audin in a recent post.
According to Audin, small businesses have emerged as top cloud adopters. Medium and large businesses, however, are proving to be harder sells.
This gap, Audin’s post explains, is especially noticeable in the international market. Very small businesses seem to be adopting cloud communications, while the adoption rate is decreasing for large enterprises. Audin maintains providers should be looking to expand internationally to continue succeeding and growing.
The U.S., surprisingly, is second globally — behind the Netherlands — for market penetration at 12 percent.
Market Drivers Of Growth
Business needs and concerns have changed significantly since the cloud first emerged, meaning there are new market drivers to consider.
Some of the top reasons for cloud migration today include:
A new study from Nemertes found that improved agility for IT is now the top driver for cloud migration. This is an increase from 29 percent in 2017. Businesses today mostly seem to be concerned with rolling services out to market quickly and reliably, which is much more difficult when working with legacy backend systems.
Businesses seeking greater agility could strongly benefit from Unified Communications (UC). Through UC, a business can push all of its communications tools into one pure or on-premises cloud platform that can be accessed over the internet. This enables rapid deployment and scalability, as well as simplified management and maintenance. UC is also great for businesses undergoing transitions, where the need for agility is heightened.
Cost savings isn’t the big mover that it used to be in this space, but it’s still a top reason for migrating to the cloud. CAPEX vs. OPEX, after all, was listed as the second-biggest driver in Nemertes’ study, while 33 percent of respondents cited cost as the primary factor for adopting cloud communications.
Of course, financial considerations will vary depending on the size of the business. Small businesses may be more likely to cite cost savings as a top reason for migrating to the cloud. A large enterprise may be less concerned about pinching pennies. Every business has different financial goals, though.
According to one Amdocs study, it should be noted, 80 percent of SMBs would prefer to get a single bill for all of their communications — both cloud and traditional. So it’s worth talking to IT administrators about the financial benefits of consolidating their invoices.
Network reliability remains a huge concern for distributed businesses, especially multinationals. And for this reason, it’s a top driver of cloud migration. Across the board, IT administrators are looking to transition away from MPLS systems to streamline connectivity and improve performance.
Cloud services can be enhanced using software-defined wide area networking (SD-WAN), which gives IT the ability to establish policies and regulate computing resources at any location. Using SD-WAN, it’s possible to ensure that all critical applications have the resources they need to operate efficiently and reliably.
Security can either be a top driver, or a top barrier to cloud adoption for a business depending on its size, market, and location.
It’s worth considering a recent Ponemon study, however, where 87 percent of respondents stated that cloud governance will become very important in the next two years, yet many do not believe their IT department is capable of handling it.
Security is a hot-button issue now that GDPR is being enforced globally. What’s more, we are a little over a year away from seeing widespread consumer privacy reform in California. Businesses everywhere should be looking to the cloud to remain in compliance and reduce costly fines.
As you can see, trends move quickly in the cloud communications space which is why it pays to work with a full spectrum provider that is in tune with the market.