According to Gartner, cloud adoption, now a path to innovation, is rapidly evolving into a business necessity. By 2028, cloud computing will be integral to achieving business objectives. Furthermore, companies’ budgets show they’re going all-in on the cloud. Gartner forecasts public spending on cloud tools and services to reach $679 billion in 2024 and $1 trillion by 2027.
To dig deeper into this trend, we recently spoke with industry thought leaders to gain their perspectives on where businesses are investing their cloud spend.
Jason Bright, product marketing manager at Hyland expects the early focus to be on getting the most value from cloud spend.
“Organizations will continue to closely monitor cloud spend and optimize where possible,” Bright says. “Third-party tools will assist them with cost optimization and will likely continue to grow in popularity. The focus of the optimizations will likely be on ‘low-value’ cloud services, such as general hosting and storage for day-to-day IT operations.”
He says although Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) providers include tools to monitor costs with their solutions, companies are looking for more robust solutions. ”More advanced third-party tools can provide better intelligence, work across cloud providers, and are more objective when reigning in spend areas that tend to run out of control if not closely monitored.”
Anil Inamdar, global head of data at Instaclustr, anticipates companies will deploy more hybrid and multi-cloud platforms across operational and analytical systems.
“These increasingly advanced data management cloud tools will make it simpler to operate data technologies across the hybrid infrastructure that many organizations now prefer —spanning on-premises, private cloud, and public cloud options,” Inamdar says.
“Businesses lacking internal expertise will likely put some of that budget toward cloud service providers to migrate and implement secure and efficient multi-cloud data platforms without hiccups. This cloud strategy — gaining the capabilities to seamlessly store, replicate, process, and manage unified data across multiple infrastructures — will enable more organizations to achieve more flexibility, availability and scalability, while still harnessing the unique strengths that each infrastructure type has to offer.”
Support for AI
Businesses will look to cloud tools to build their capabilities to make the most of artificial intelligence (AI). Sean Mahoney, general manager and vice president of Ensono, says, “Cloud-native tools centered on real-time data collection and analysis will be heavily invested in for 2024. Right now, many IT leaders have their eyes on AI but lack the infrastructure or data platform to enable effective AI use,” Mahoney says. “It’s crucial to have a modern, cloud-based data platform used in modern ways in place to collect quality data that can be easily filtered, analyzed and leveraged for the desired output. Once this is in place, then adding in AI for automation or insights can be considered.”
Narmada Nannaka, cloud lead at Women Who Code, agrees that AI is driving cloud spending. “The surge in AI adoption is steering organizations towards increased investment in AI-as-a-Service tools, leveraging platforms like Microsoft Copilot, Amazon CodeWhisperer, and Google Duet. As cloud infrastructure plays a vital role in democratizing AI services, these tools are set to spearhead advancements in productivity.”
Nannaka adds that the 2024 Gartner CIO and Technology Executive Survey signals a remarkable shift, with 80 percent of CIOs planning to elevate spending on cyber- and information security. “The symbiotic relationship between AI and data accentuates the need for robust cybersecurity measures, considering the heightened risks associated with sensitive data used in AI model training. Security and resilience are becoming paramount in the cloud arena,” she says.
“Furthermore, the cautious spending momentum from the challenging macro environment in 2023 will echo into 2024,” Nannaka points out. “This prudence is driving a notable uptick in investment towards cloud spend management tools, empowering leadership to orchestrate efficient and cost-effective IT programs.”
“The coming year promises a strategic alignment of budgets with the evolving technological landscape, where these three tools stand out as front-runners in shaping IT expenditure priorities,” she concludes.