By now, the potential benefits of adopting cloud computing solutions should be well-established – lower running costs, greater flexibility and scalability are just some of the key positives. Yet despite the opportunities the technology provides, it’s still viewed with suspicion by many professionals.
If you’re among the doubters, you’re far from alone. Even though almost every business will find itself adopting cloud to some degree in the coming years, it’s not exactly likely to be welcomed with open arms.
In fact, a new study conducted by the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) on behalf of Google has revealed that just 16 per cent of professionals have a very high level of trust in their cloud services – and this could be having a significant impact on their bottom line.
Trust essential to cloud success
If you are an advocate of the cloud, you may think this is no big deal. After all, once people get to experience the benefits of the technology first hand, and the big scare stories such as worries about sacrificing security or control don’t come to pass, naysayers will come around.
But while this may be true in the long-term, for now, scepticism about the cloud is having a very real impact on business’ results.
The EIU’s survey found that Respondents who say their organisation has higher trust in the cloud also report much better outcomes than their peers who indicate lower trust, and this is true for both non-financial and financial success metrics.
For instance, companies with very high levels of trust in the cloud reported an average increase in profits of 9.1 per cent since adopting the technology, compared with just one per cent for those in the low-trust group.
In some ways, this is hardly surprising, and relates to a lack of understanding about what the cloud can offer.
Dr Said Tabet, co-chair of the Cloud Security Alliance’s CloudTrust working Group, said: “Lack of trust is often about dealing with the unknown. If you don’t understand what is in front of you and its capabilities, you won’t trust it.”
Building employee confidence
Of course, building the necessary level of trust is far easier said than done. Dr Tabet stated that to achieve this, both cloud vendors and their customers need to demonstrate transparency and have proper governance processes in place.
Firms can’t ignore this issue and hope it will fix itself in time, as trust isn’t something that will emerge organically. The EIU’s report offered several key recommendations for tackling this challenge. These are:
- Leadership from the very top. The survey revealed that organisations that have a high level of buy-in and support from the C-suite report higher levels of trust than those that do not have this engagement.
- Plan to build trust from the start. From the very earliest stages of a cloud rollout, businesses need to be working to foster trust – for example, by starting with quick wins that lead to tangible improvements.
- Pre-rollout education. While training people to use the new tools is fairly straightforward, the key to gaining trust will be to push employees to do more and get them thinking about the solutions in a more creative way.
If you can keep these things in mind, the chances are you’ll be well on your way to a happier workforce that fully understands the cloud and has faith in what it can do.
Find out more about Aspect’s cloud computing solutions and what they can do for your business.
Sarah has worked for several large technology organisations, including Dell and ILOG (now IBM) and most recently, Microsoft. During her 3.5 years at Microsoft, she held the position of Marketing Communications Manager.For 2 years Sarah worked delivering the marketing vision for the Partner network across the UK. Engaging with the VAR’s, the System Integrators and the Resellers. During her last 18 months at Microsoft, Sarah was responsible for launching Windows 7 for Business and Education.
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