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Retail sector flagged as slow to adopt cloud technologies in Bitglass research

The fourth annual Bitglass cloud adoption survey reveals enterprise appetite for off-premise technologies is continuing to rise, but some industries are moving more slowly than others

The retail sector has emerged as a cloud adoption laggard in the latest Bitglass cloud adoption research, which cites the sector’s large investments in legacy infrastructure as a major cause.

The cloud security software supplier tracked the IT usage habits of 135,000 organisations around the world to compile the fourth edition of its annual cloud adoption report, and concluded the retail sector has a lot of catching up to do when it comes to embracing the world of off-premise services.

“Due to large investments in existing IT infrastructure, these organisations are less likely to use the cloud [than] others,” the report states.

Its findings show, for example, that less than half (47.8%) of retailers have deployed Microsoft’s cloud-based business productivity suite, Office 365, and fewer than one in 10 (9%) use Amazon Web Services’ (AWS) to fulfil their infrastructure requirements.

Engineering is an example of another sector that appears to have been slow to come round to the charms of cloud, with the results highlighting the low take-up of services from Microsoft, Google, Salesforce and Amazon by users in this industry to.

While the engineering industry’s use of Office 365 is higher than the retail industry’s, at 50.2%, the Bitglass research shows overall business adoption of the technology now stands at 56.3%, compared with 24.8% for Google’s competing G-Suite portfolio of products.

The education sector, conversely, emerged as the lead adopter of a wide range of cloud technologies, which the report puts down to the preferential pricing offers many of the suppliers listed in the report – including Microsoft and Box – to members of the academic community.

Read more about cloud adoption trends

Its findings further revealed that around 13.8% of companies around the world now make use of services offered by AWS, with the technology industry emerging as the keenest users of its technology at 21.5% adoption, followed by the education (19.7%) and media sectors (15.3%).

Overall, the report claims the worldwide use of cloud technologies now stands at around 81%, which is up 238% on 2014, which is when Bitglass first started tracking the market.

Rich Campagna, chief marketing officer at Bitglass, said – while the use of cloud is growing rapidly within the business world – it is still uncertain which of the runners and riders will go on to become “staples” of the enterprise IT world.

“It comes as no surprise that cloud adoption keeps achieving all-time highs year after year. Organisations worldwide have come to trust platforms like Office 365 and AWS as vendors continue to bolster security and feature-sets,” he said.

“Competition between major public cloud players such as Amazon, Google, and Microsoft will only increase as they fight to grow market share. It remains to be seen which emerging apps will join them to become staples in the enterprise.”

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