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Moving to Cloud-First – Is it really as difficult as it seems?

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The IT landscape is markedly different to the one of 15, 10 or even five years ago. Investing in costly IT infrastructure is, for many enterprises, a thing of the past. They are rapidly moving from in-house installations to a cloud-first, subscription-based model to secure the computing capacity that is needed to run the organization.

In this new world IT becomes a strategic business partner, helping to manage enterprise services. But just how difficult is this task?

ServiceNow conducted a survey during Pink17 in Las Vegas earlier this year where they spoke to those who had started this shift early – these were organizations that considered themselves to already be at least 25 percent through making this transformation. Their responses were compared with those from organizations who were considered to be ‘late movers’, these were organizations which had not reached that 25 percent completion threshold.

This comparison highlighted many misconceptions about the difficulty, cost and timeframe for making this shift. First movers were likely to see opportunities where later movers saw challenges.

When looking at the possibility of there being a shortage of appropriate IT skills, 57 percent of late-movers were concerned about this risk, while only 30 percent of the early starters saw this as a problem.

The differences in other areas of concern, such as security fears or losing control of the IT environment showed a similar disparity in opinions.

However, there was one area where both first and late movers agreed, both groups felt that inertia is the biggest challenge when making a shift to the cloud.

ServiceNow was able to extract some key lessons from successful first-movers:

  • Shifting to cloud is a journey. You need to take the first step
  • Start with low-hanging fruit and show leadership
  • Inertia is the #1 obstacle to change – you need to tackle it head-on
  • Create an environment of change
  • Be committed to change

You can read more on this subject by downloading the full paper, or reading the ServiceNow blog on the subject.

This year’s annual ServiceNow conference – Knowledge17 – takes place in Orlando, at the Orange County Convention Center, on May 7-11. If cloud-first is a strategy your organization is pursuing, or interested in learning more about, there will be many opportunities to learn more at the event.


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Kirstie Magowan

Kirstie Magowan is the managing editor of IT Chronicles. Kirstie is an experienced journalist and publisher who has been working in the IT Service Management industry since 1999. Kirstie is a regular speaker at industry conferences globally.