Cloud migrations are accelerating as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic – and Microsoft is the main beneficiary of this extra demand, according to new research.
The latest report from analyst firm CCS Insight, its latest annual survey on IT investment with more than 730 respondents, found the proportion of businesses with more than half of their IT workloads in the cloud is expected to double, to 56%, in the coming 12 months.
Microsoft Azure was cited as both the most-used and most trusted public cloud, according to the survey, ahead of IBM, Google Cloud, and Amazon Web Services.
When it came to IT budgets more generally, there was positive news. Two thirds of respondents said they expected to increase their budgets in 2021 in spite of a recession. Cloud security in particular was seen as top of mind for the majority of respondents.
Security was a differentiator across investments, ranging from collaboration tools to investments in artificial intelligence (AI). Gauging trust in technology providers is also seen as key, with security capabilities playing an important role. This is an aspect CCS Insight has been championing since as far back as late 2018; the big cloud vendors will use trust, rather than compute, storage, or even emerging technologies, as their primary currency.
Nick McQuire, SVP of enterprise research at CCS Insight, again noted the trust issue – and how it had become exacerbated during the pandemic. “An enduring feature of the pandemic has been the elevated importance customers now place on their trust in technology suppliers, particularly cloud providers,” he said. “In this respect, security and trust are among the top priorities for senior leaders as we move into the next phase of the crisis.
“Trust and security are clearly important themes that will shape the market,” McQuire added.
Elsewhere, another perhaps predictable result of Covid-19 has been attitudes to remote working. More than a third (34%) of senior leaders polled said they expect more than half of their workforce to work ‘mainly’ from home post-pandemic. Microsoft again scored highly here, with Teams deployed by 46% of respondents’ companies for remote collaboration.
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