The journey to cloud: Companies must shift focus from migration to continuous evolution

As cloud migration becomes more commonplace, companies must shift their focus to a continuous cloud journey to unlock the full potential of their cloud investments. Let’s take a look at the four major trends and key practices that can help organisations to drive more value.


With cloud migrations on the rise, companies have recognised the importance of focusing on their ongoing cloud journeys to achieve their expected outcomes at higher rates. According to Accenture’s recent research titled, ‘The race to cloud: Reaching the inflection point to long sought value’, the companies that have achieved greater outcomes are ahead in their cloud journeys. Building upon similar research conducted in 2018 and 2020, the report identifies where companies are on their cloud journeys and how much value they’re getting from their cloud investments. 

State of the cloud market


The report reveals four major findings based on proprietary research and a global survey of 800 businesses and IT leaders. First, cloud commitment has risen, as 86 per cent of companies report increasing the scope and volume of their cloud initiatives since 2020. Additionally, the vast majority of cloud users now have hybrid cloud environments (public and private) and a large percentage use multiple public cloud providers (multi-cloud).

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Organisations achieving greater outcomes


Second, the organisations that are achieving greater outcomes are the ones that are further along in their cloud journeys. The heavy adopters continue to fully achieve their outcomes more frequently, 47 per cent on average, than the medium (36 per cent) or the low adopters (21 per cent). Higher achievement levels also correlate with greater use of third-party managed services. Almost half (45 per cent) of the companies that are fully achieving their outcomes are using managed services to a great extent.

Expansion beyond cost savings 


Third, the ambitions of organisations have expanded beyond cost savings as their cloud journeys continue with more complexities accruing into them along the way. Companies are investing more in the cloud, but nearly 7 in 10 (68 per cent) still consider their cloud journeys incomplete.

Having picked the low-hanging fruit, they are now migrating to more complex and business-critical systems but haven’t yet realised the full value of their investments. Cloud environments are growing more complex, and businesses that consider their cloud journeys complete (32 per cent) are putting themselves at risk in a dynamic market environment as those that stand still get left behind.

Persistent barriers


Fourth, the stubborn barriers from the past years remain. To unlock further cloud value, companies must move towards more complex and business-critical systems. When asked to identify the top barriers to achieving value from their cloud investments, the respondents cited “security and compliance risks” and “complexity of business and operational change”, with 41 per cent of them placing them in their top three barriers overall. “Legacy application modernisation” follows closely behind, with 39 per cent of respondents listing it amongst their top three barriers.

Key practices for unlocking more cloud value

As more and more companies embrace cloud technology, it’s essential to ensure that they’re getting the maximum value from their investments. These are the five key practices that companies should adopt to unlock more value from their cloud investments:

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Look beyond technology adoption

While technology is undoubtedly a critical component of any cloud journey, it’s crucial to look beyond technology adoption and consider the other factors that can impact the overall success of your cloud transformation.

This includes changing the way your company thinks and acts, pursuing business and industry advantages, and tapping into trapped data to drive total enterprise reinvention. By doing so, you can achieve a more significant impact and create a competitive advantage in your industry.

Focus on designing and operating in the Cloud Continuum

The Cloud Continuum is a combination of capabilities that spans everything from the public and the private to the edge and everything in between. To gain a competitive advantage, it’s essential to design and operate in this continuum effectively. It involves transforming your IT estates and complex business-critical systems to take full advantage of the cloud’s capabilities. Companies that can operate seamlessly across this continuum will have a significant advantage over their competitors.

Reimagine your operating model and talent

Thriving in the Cloud Continuum requires a complete overhaul of your operating model and talent. Skilled architects are essential to navigate the plethora of technical decisions that are required to succeed in the cloud. In addition to that, organisations must manage the dynamic, variable costs of cloud deployments with new forecasting mechanisms and processes. By mastering cloud economics, you can optimise your cloud spend and achieve significant savings.

Pursue cloud economics to optimise cloud spend

Cloud economics is a crucial component of any successful cloud journey. Companies must learn to manage the dynamic, variable costs of cloud deployments with new forecasting mechanisms and processes. By doing so, they can optimise their cloud spend and achieve significant savings. It’s crucial to have a deep understanding of cloud economics to ensure that your cloud investments are delivering the maximum possible value.

Make cybersecurity and compliance a top priority

Security and compliance risks are among the top hurdles to achieving value from cloud investments. To harness the full potential of your cloud investments, it’s essential to prioritise cybersecurity and compliance. By doing so, you can mitigate risks, protect sensitive data, and ensure regulatory compliance.

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Following these five key practices, companies can unlock more value from their cloud investments. With a comprehensive approach that encompasses technology, operating models, talent, and cybersecurity, companies can achieve crucial cost savings and create a competitive advantage in their industry.


Onwards with the cloud

As companies continue to migrate to the cloud, it is imperative for them to shift their focus from simply migrating to a continuous cloud journey that maximises the value of their cloud investments. The recent trends in cloud adoption show that the companies that have made the most progress in their cloud journeys are achieving better outcomes. The journey to the cloud is no longer just about cost savings, but a comprehensive approach that encompasses technology, operating models, talent, and cybersecurity to create a competitive edge in the industry.

One of the biggest challenges to unlocking the full value of cloud investments is the complexity of business-critical systems and legacy application modernisation. To overcome these barriers, companies must adopt a five-pronged approach that includes looking beyond technology adoption, designing and operating in the Cloud Continuum, reimagining their operating models and talent, pursuing cloud economics to optimise their cloud spends, and prioritising cybersecurity and compliance.

As the cloud market continues to grow, companies must adapt to stay ahead of the competition. The cloud journey is a continuous evolution, and the companies that embrace this mindset will be better positioned to achieve their desired outcomes. By adopting the key practices outlined in this article, companies can not only realise the full potential of their cloud investments but can also stay ahead of the curve in a dynamic and ever-changing market.