Firms that recognized the cloud as a launch pad rather than a static destination are more resilient and competitive: survey

A global survey of 4,000 global executives across 25 countries and 16 industries, which included 900 executives in the Asia Pacific region (APAC), was conducted in late 2020 and early 2021 to collect data on cloud migration trends.

The data has been interpreted to reach this conclusion: organizations that treat the cloud computing as a new operating model to continuously reinvent their businesses tend to realize greater business value that are well beyond cost savings. That also means: looking at the Cloud as a one-time migration to a static destination is limiting.

Accenture, the consultancy firm that commissioned the survey, defines organizations leading the way in cloud as ‘Continuum Competitors’. These organizations comprised about 13% of APAC respondents, and they stood out by extending the experience they gained from public cloud to their private data centers and edge locations to transform daily business operations.

As a result, they achieved substantial gains from their continued cloud engagement and outperformed their competitors.

Highlights from the report include:

  • Continuum Competitors in the survey were much better positioned to withstand future shocks and were:
    • 3.7 times more likely to innovate, automate and re-engineer knowledge work. In China, significantly wider benefits of up to 14 times were observed
    • able to achieve 1.5 times greater cost reduction than organizations focused mainly on data migration
    • aiming to achieve more for their operational and financial goals. This included targeting at least 50% more business measures such as increasing customers and going to market faster than their peers
    • up to two times more likely to use the cloud for at least sustainability goals. These goals included doing more with fewer servers; the use of more efficient servers; creating better architecture for greener IT than on-premises; reducing their carbon footprint and using green energy sources for IT
    • two times more likely to use cloud to innovate how knowledge work was performed
  • By studying Continuum Competitors in the survey, the firm identified what it considers ‘winning cloud approaches’:
    1. Know where you want the continuum to take you. Developing strategies aligned with the constant evolution of cloud capabilities will help drive organizations further.
    2. Establish cloud practices to support and augment your technologies. Organizations must couple technology adoption with practices that bring discipline and help change non-technology areas at the pace of computational improvements.
    3. Accelerate innovation to deliver exceptional experiences. Continuum Competitors prioritized their investments in experience and used a combination of human-centered design and cloud-based technologies to rethink experience for greater engagement.
    4. Provide continuous strategic commitment. Organizations must recognize the ‘all-hands’ nature of the challenge. Everyone across the organization needs to be informed of the Cloud’s ever-improving potential and best practices.

Said Ryoji Sekido, Senior Managing Director, Accenture Technology Lead (Japan, China, Asia Pacific, Africa and Middle East) and Executive Vice President, Accenture Japan: “Many organizations have had to undergo compressed transformation due to the pandemic, and most are already engaging with cloud in some form. The ones that recognize cloud as a launch pad are seeing substantial gains and have even managed to benefit amidst global disruptions. By extending the Cloud Continuum vision to the entire technology stack from infrastructure to network, applications and beyond, organizations can continue to grow and innovate with new ways of operating.”