Hello Cloud community,
I am now finalising the speaker panel for our 5th Edition of the Cloud MENA Forum, taking place 13th & 14th April 2015 in Dubai. In addition to the discussions I had with leading IT experts from Enterprises, Operators, Solution Providers and Industry Bodies to understand better the Cloud-related challenges in the region, we recently run a relevant on-line survey. You can find below some of the responses we received along with comments.
We asked the audience to rate the benefits of Cloud Computing and the 3 predominant ones were: 1) Cost efficiency, 2) Data security and 3) Agility.
Following this, we asked you ‘What challenges are you facing when it comes to Cloud adoption?’. Key themes that came up were:
- Privacy related concerns: guaranteeing data security, trusting the Cloud, understanding the regional legislation.
- Internal related concerns: willingness to change, getting internal buy-in, and training staff.
- Customer related concerns: communicating the technicalities, benefits and risks of collecting, storing and analysing customer data.
- Vendor related concerns: choosing the Cloud model that responds to your needs, location of data centre, accessibility and SLA agreements, long term availability of service.
- Technical concerns: moving large amounts of data to the Cloud, managing Big Data & Analytics, understanding SaaS Vs Cloud, convergence & virtualisation.
It is quite interesting to notice the paradox that the mentioned benefits, also constitute some of the largest barriers to Cloud adoption in the MENA region.
In addition, the lack of clear regional or national regulation on the matter adds to the confusion and makes Cloud adoption even more challenging. 35.71% of the respondent said they are ‘confused, not too sure what regulation permits’ and a 10.71% said they are not aware at all of what the regulation permits.
It is hard to miss the image the above information paints – how the IT industry in the MENA region seems caught up in a vicious circle that keeps Cloud penetration levels low. Even though the benefits of Cloud (agility, cost reduction, data security, collaboration and productivity benefits and more) are widely accepted, the privacy concerns, unclear regulatory landscape, level of initial investment required and technical challenges are making getting internal buy-in for Cloud highly challenging for IT leaders. It is apparent that there is lack of information or education (on all levels and topics) in the region.
We have developed Cloud MENA in a way that it is a high level educational platform for the region. We hope that it will break down several myths and help bring the IT industry forward in the Middle East and North Africa.Being free for operators and enterprises and featuring dedicated streams for both, with 50+ speakers, 850+ facilitated VIP introductions (in 2014) and 10+ hours of interactive and networking sessions & breaks, Cloud MENA needs to be in your calendar!
For more speaking, exhibiting, attending or anything else have a look at our website: mena.cloudworldseries.com or get in touch at firstname.lastname@example.org
P.S. The above is just a short outline of some of the responses we got from the survey – we will elaborate further in future posts.
Senior Conference Researcher