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Cloud Budgeting Emerging as a Challenge for Enterprises: Survey

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Organizations are increasing their usage of the public cloud, particularly in terms of business applications, but are being “left in the dark” on details concerning cost and cloud consumption, according to a new survey from Dimensional Research sponsored by Cloud Cruiser, a hybrid cloud analytics company.

Forty-two percent of 350 IT professionals polled by the companies at the Amazon Web Services (AWS) re:Invent conferences in 2014 and 2015 said they found it difficult to properly allocate public cloud costs and usage. A big majority, 85 percent, said the ability to share the particulars of their public cloud consumption with the business was valuable.

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The results echo those from an earlier study from the companies.

During the Microsoft Ignite conference in May, Dimensional Research surveyed 279 IT professionals, 72 percent of which characterized the ability to track cloud costs and usage as extremely or very important. Less than half of those polled (45 percent) rated their ability to track those metrics as very good or excellent.

“The public cloud is delivering measurable business benefits as companies find ways to manage and mitigate security and compliance requirements,” said David Gehringer, principal, Dimensional Research, in a statement. “This drives more organizations to place business applications in the cloud, expanding public cloud usage beyond development and test to that of a flexible business asset.”

Pinning down the value of that asset is proving to be a challenge for many organizations.

Gehringer observed that “IT is expected to provide reliable services and ensure cost transparency so the business can make fact-based decisions about the ROI on services.” Next year, he said his analyst group “expect to see more business applications in the cloud and an increased focus on cost transparency comparing those of internal resources and external public cloud services.”

Last month, a study from Sungard Availability Services, a provider of managed IT services, found that unexpected cloud spending can leave IT budgets in disarray.

In the company’s survey of 250 IT leaders, 74 percent said they spent $30,000 or more in monthly maintenance on top of their initial investment. Seventy percent said they spent at least $150,000 in unanticipated costs. “Businesses are experiencing a ‘cloud hangover’ from the unexpected expenses and market perception that indicated all workloads can easily move to the cloud,” said Chris Ortbals, vice president of services product management at Sungard Availability Services, in a statement.

Pedro Hernandez is a contributing editor at Datamation. Follow him on Twitter @ecoINSITE.

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