Everyone knows that one of the top cloud services model benefits, according to users, is the ability to stream payments out over the offering’s useful life, rather than paying the entire cost up-front. But I still found it intriguing when IDC colleague Jennifer Koppy recently presented additional data points that support the strong economic appeal of the cloud model:
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This survey finding, from the IDC Leasing and Financing Survey Results (IDC#218599, June 2009) report, shows user interest in a number of acquisition options, as alternatives to leasing. Two things stand out:
- Users rated cloud computing as the top alternative to traditional IT leasing. Cloud computing garnered the highest average rating (2.7 out of a maximum 4), as well as the highest percentage of respondents (27%) indicating an interest level of 4 (”very interested”). It’s notable that the third highest-rated alternative was “utility-type computing”, which is synonymous with cloud computing.
- Cloud computing edged out outsourcing as a leasing/financing alternative. In tough times, as CIOs are squeezed, they’ve traditionally looked to outsourcing as a method for lowering costs, and spreading them out. No doubt this finding will be particularly interesting – and challenging – to outsourcing services providers, most of whom are currently trying to determine just how serious they should be in adding cloud services options to their services profolios.
It’s clear that cloud computing is of growing interest, not just to the technologists, but to the money people – the CFOs, CEOs, Procurement VPs, as well as senior IT execs – who think about the capital and cost implications of IT. And from these ratings, it looks like their initial impressions are positive. The implications for the IT leasing and finance players, as well as traditional IT outsourcers is obvious: they need to quickly determine how they will get their share of the growing cloud opportunity.