27 May 2021
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Australia and New Zealand lead cloud adoption, but more progress to be made

By Shannon Williams

Australia and New Zealand currently rank joint first with the United States when it comes to cloud adoption, new research has revealed. 

The Infosys Cloud Radar 2021 report shows A/NZ has shifted 43% of IT systems to the cloud in 2020. However, while this figure is set to advance to 52% by 2022, A/NZ will then rank joint third with France. This downward shift indicates that local adoption strategies are less aggressive than other regions.  

The Infosys Cloud Radar 2021 has revealed the links between enterprise cloud usage and business growth. The independent study shows that enterprises in the six regions surveyed can add up to $414 billion in net new profits, annually, through effective cloud adoption.

"Australian and New Zealand enterprises have historically led investment into the adoption of new technologies, with cloud strategies out of these markets clearly world-leading according to our study," says Infosys VP and regional head Andrew Groth.

"It's interesting to see local enterprises performing well when it comes to harnessing cloud for speed, but less so across capability metrics. 

"This shows that while Australian and New Zealand enterprises can harness the cloud to deploy and scale fast, there is still a need to drill into those growth benefits such as finding new revenue streams," he says.

Groth says accessing these benefits will see enterprises utilising cloud to foster collaboration or unlocking value from data via artificial intelligence.

"It's this combination of using cloud to deliver on enhanced speed and capability that typifies the highest performing businesses we surveyed," he says.

"If local enterprises keep pushing boundaries across their cloud strategies, they are likely to achieve and maintain a competitive advantage at a global level."
 
The Cloud Radar 2021 survey was conducted by the Infosys Knowledge Institute, a research arm of Infosys, with over 2,500 respondents from companies across U.S., U.K., France, Germany, Australia, and New Zealand. It covered a range of business performance goals related to cloud and found specific links to competencies such as speed to market and capabilities. 

A strong profit link was identified when using cloud to rapidly bring new solutions and services to market. These investments provide a foundation to leverage AI & automation and build cloud based new sources of revenue.
 
The study found specific links between business profit growth and the use of cloud to rapidly develop and launch new solutions, and bring new functionality to market. Cloud’s ability to generate new value from data and discover new revenue sources also links to profit growth. 
 
Specifically, these benefits are derived from business’ ability to accelerate time to market, enhance business capabilities and build a competitive edge. The study found that the highest performing businesses had annual profits growth that correlated with using cloud in six ways. 
(1) Speed up how they develop and launch new solutions
(2) Add new functions to software in use
(3) Expand processing capacity
(4) Foster collaboration
(5) Unlock value from data via AI
(6) Discover new revenue sources.  
 
Superior Cloud performance requires high levels of adoption and orchestration
 
Cloud-fuelled profit boosts can be attained by companies in any region or industry. However, they only kick in when businesses have at least 60% of their systems in the cloud. To benefit from AI on cloud, the bar is even higher. Businesses must have at least 80% of their business functions – such as cross domain business applications – in the cloud for AI to boost profit growth. 
 
The research describes four distinct performance cohorts – minimally effective, effective, highly effective, and exceptional. Businesses can benchmark themselves against each cohort by exploring the cloud radar digital experience and learn how to improve their cloud strategy and performance.   
 
∙         Exceptional performers (16%) use a larger mix of cloud service providers and more frequently employ hybrid cloud arrangements.
∙         Highly effective performers (19%) have shifted nearly as many business functions to the cloud as exceptional performers. They are motivated to use cloud for accelerating deployment of new solutions and services.
∙         Effective performers (33%) have rapidly shifted business functions to cloud but started with fewer business functions in cloud two years ago. This cohort is more focused on cloud for cost savings than better-performing peers.
∙         Minimally effective performers (32%) are least likely to use public cloud and have the least certainty in estimating cloud expenditures.
 
Despite acceleration in cloud adoption, only a fraction of large companies reached the highest level of performance and adoption, the report shows. The Cloud Radar study found that  nearly 1 out of 6 companies achieved exceptional cloud performance. 

In cloud adoption terms, fewer than one in five have crossed the 60% threshold to reap the profit benefits. By 2022, more than 40% of enterprises surveyed plan to shift over 60% of systems into the cloud, from 17% today.
 
According to the report, companies delivering exceptional performance in the cloud show a strong motivation to use cloud for business growth, namely, increasing speed to market, adding capabilities, and increasing scale. 

Infosys says these exceptional performers also demonstrated greater confidence in terms of cloud spending and were more likely to engage with three or more cloud service providers, giving them the capability to place workloads optimally. They also more frequently utilise a hybrid multi-cloud arrangement – combining the best features of private and public cloud.
 
“Effectively leveraging cloud is a transformational pillar in digital journeys. Where early cloud was a tool for allowing companies to rapidly scale, modern cloud allows companies to rapidly innovate," says Ravi Kumar S., President, Infosys.

"Today’s cloud creates a network effect across processes, data, content, experience and more. This network effect keeps enterprises relevant in a rapidly changing new digital age," he says.

"The findings from the Infosys Cloud Radar 2021 comprehensively show that growth and profitability can be correlated to superior enterprise cloud adoption and orchestration.” 
 

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