Study: 55% of IT Industry Pros in UK Trust Public Cloud Providers

Over half (55%) of UK IT professionals currently have faith in public cloud services, which is less than they did two years ago due to issues with usage costs, migration, and customer support, according to research data released by Leaseweb, a global provider of Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) hosting and cloud services.

The study raises doubts about the viability of hyperscale cloud as a long-term solution and examines the experiences 500 UK-based IT professionals had with public cloud providers over the last two years. Despite the fact that the majority of respondents claimed to have their cloud expenses under control, transparency, customer service, and the ease of transferring workloads are raised as possible issues. Overall, the findings would point to a serious problem with trusting public cloud providers.

For instance, the majority of respondents (57%) reported that moving workloads out of a public cloud environment was difficult, and just under half (49%) indicated that it was difficult to grasp how much their cloud usage was costing them. Despite this, 72% of respondents said they have successfully kept expenses associated with using public clouds under control, while 46% said they ‘somewhat agree.’ Nearly half (49%) experienced trouble contacting customer support from a public cloud provider.

“The results of this study strengthen the case for hybrid combinations thanks to the flexibility and choice it can deliver to both large and small companies,” said Terry Storrar, Managing Director UK at Leaseweb. “And much as there has been a shift towards cloud adoption, rather than highlighting the pandemic as a key driver of a shift to the cloud, it appears that businesses were investing in cloud beforehand and that investment levels have remained relatively static.”

Decline in Cloud-First Policies

Additionally, even though the cloud is now a crucial part of many IT infrastructure initiatives, ‘cloud only’ and ‘cloud first’ are not widely used, nor are they seen as the solution to all business problems. The survey also indicated a decline in support for ‘cloud first’ policies around 2022, despite a surge in the usage of cloud infrastructure throughout the epidemic.

For example, 36% of organizations identified their strategy to IT infrastructure as ‘cloud first’ during the January 2019 – December 2021 (before COVID epidemic) timeframe, but just 19% stated their organization was formally committed to a ‘cloud-only’ approach. In the time after the post COVID epidemic, ‘cloud first’ pledges fell to 31% and ‘cloud exclusively’ commitments increased to 25% of respondents.

The End of On-Premise Infrastructure

Terry Storrar, Managing Director UK at Leaseweb
“The key takeaway from this research is IT teams are looking for flexibility – there’s no one size fits all approach,” said Terry Storrar, Managing Director UK at Leaseweb.

The most common responses when asked which type of IT infrastructure would be best for their company were private cloud solely (23%) and a combination of on-premise and public cloud (20%). Following them were solely public clouds (17%) and a combination of on-premises and private clouds (14%), with on-premises clouds alone coming in last at 7%.

Two-thirds (66%) of respondents agreed that during the next two years, the industry would see the end of on-premise infrastructure, indicating a significant shift away from on-premise legacy infrastructure. The study’s findings suggest that even while on-premises is not a significant component of IT strategy, it is still present in many organizations’ infrastructures.

The positive news would be that innovation does not appear to be being stifled by this; just 16% of respondents claimed that legacy infrastructure was impeding further cloud adoption or restricting their organization’s capacity to make business choices. The end of on-premises infrastructure may be near, but it’s not quite here, so the emphasis is now on installing applications in the appropriate location.

“Although respondents acknowledge that the desire and need to look after on-premises infrastructure is dying, the results also indicate that businesses are still using it as an ongoing component of their IT infrastructure when adopting hybrid cloud,” said Leaseweb’s Managing Director UK. “The key takeaway from this research is IT teams are looking for flexibility – there’s no one size fits all approach. Organizations are now more likely to qualify cloud out during the assessment stage, rather than the other way around, but the main focus is on choosing the right infrastructure locations for specific use cases.”