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Business Collaboration in the Cloud_final

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  Business Collaborationin the Cloud Why companies are turning toSaaS solutions to drive productivityacross global workorces  In today’s increasingly global business climate, com-panies are expanding operations to many parts o theworld in order to secure and optimize talent where itlives. This trend is leading to an explosion o geographi-cally distributed virtual teams.Global teams ace distinct obstacles to collaboratingand working together productively. Employees can’tsimply walk down to the next meeting room to planprojects, discuss goals, or troubleshoot an IT problem i they are physically located in Palo Alto, Bangalore andShanghai. Without critical communication skills andsupportive tools, virtual teams will ail to collaborateeectively and end up being classied as “low peror-mance” teams.Companies have turned to technology to improve collab-orative eorts. While traditional, pre-Internet technolo-gies were cumbersome, expensive and complex, today’scloud computing technologies, on-demand applications,ubiquitous broadband access, and mobile technologieshave revolutionized the inter-connected workorce.Cloud solutions have proven convenient, powerul, andcost-eective in bringing diverse and distributed teamstogether.This whitepaper presents ndings rom Sand HillGroup’s “Leaders in the Cloud” study to explore themarket drivers o cloud computing and on-demand Sot-ware-as-a-Service technologies and better understandthe benets o deploying these technologies to solvethe complex challenges o a globalized markets, virtualteams, and ever-changing business climate. Competing in Today’sComplex BusinessEnvironment  Leveraging Cloud to Drive Collaboration 1 Market Drivers: Global Business and the Cloud Collide The trend towards virtual oces has been accelerating or the past severalyears as companies seek new ways to reduce costs o acilities, travel andother overhead expenses. Small and mid-sized companies are driving thistrend as they propel the economic growth and recoveryo the economy overall.On the global economic ront, emerging markets haverecovered aster and emerged stronger rom recenteconomic woes and they continue to drive new growthor established and new companies alike. As these mar-kets mature, they bring more experienced and skilledpeople to the global workorce causing an increase inoutsourcing. Organizations will not only outsource rou-tine management and maintenance work but will alsoincreasingly outsource strategic R&D and other high-value projects that required highly skilled workers.As the world shrinks and global markets expand, businesses need new wayso connecting and collaborating with each other. Cloud computing prom-ises to enable this uture in ways that would have been unimaginable justa ew years ago. With cloud-based applications today, companies conductinexpensive high-denition video conerences with multiple people romaround the globe. It’s thereore no exaggeration to call cloud computing thebiggest IT transormational wave since the client-server and PC revolution.Over the past ten years, massively parallel computing and high-bandwidthInternet were commoditized to such a degree that computing resources andapplications are today ubiquitously accessible in a variety o ways to every-one on the street - with near instantaneous scalability.Experts have noted the similarities to the “old” days o centralized time-sharing computing. However, that era never boasted today’s level o democ-ratization and commoditization o massive-scale computing resources andhigh-speed Internet access at any time in the history o computing.A perect storm is orming to push cloud computing orward. First, enablingtechnologies such as virtualization, open-source, massive-scale automa-tion, and multi-tenancy have matured to the point o widespread adoption.Second, successul vendors and their oerings are lling the market withpositive customer experiences. Third, the global recession continues towring unds rom IT budgets and prompt CIOs to look or more ways to savemoney. Pioneering cloud companies such as Google, Amazon, Citrix, andSalesorce have taken massive scale and automation to unprecedented lev-els, accelerating the trend towards the industrialization o IT and the utilityconsumption model.Many early adopter companies and their IT leaders—particularly in the “It is a jarring contrast - today’s ofce isvery likely to involve mobile technology ina car, or a VoIP call rom a home ofce, butwith the continued popularity o Dilbertcomics and the TV hit “The Ofce,” the oldworld o cubicles, monitors, ax machines,and water coolers seems to be rozen intime.” – Oliver Marks, Collaboration 2.0 blog on ZDNet   Leveraging Cloud to Drive Collaboration 2 small and medium enterprise space—have experi-enced some ground-breaking business value rom theirinvestment in cloud solutions. A 2010 Sand Hill Groupstudy conducted 40 in-depth interviews with enterpriseand vendor executives and surveyed 511 technologydecision makers. The resulting “Leaders in the Cloud”report describes cloud computing’s ability to increaseROI, decrease TCO, speed development, improve reli-ability and renovate the perception o IT in their com-panies. The result? A more agile, competitive business.These are but a ew o the real-world examples obottom-line business benefts already being real-ized by cloud leaders.The study also ound that a whopping 60% o the participants in the surveyhave implemented cloud solutions. A small portion o small and mid-sizedenterprises (SMEs) surveyed have more than 80 percent o their businessesrunning in the cloud.“Leaders in the Cloud” also ound that SMEs are twice as likely to movetheir core business-critical services to the cloud as large enterprises (25percent versus 12 percent). The ollowing chart illustrates the dierencesbetween large and small companies. Also, note the very small percentage(4 percent to 6 percent) o companies who have no plans or implementingcloud solutions. “…Realizing multi-old decreases in costcompared to traditional solutions…Developing applications on cloudplatorms in 15 minutes.… Creatingapplications over a weekend…Consolidating server investments rom13 machines to 1… Reallocating ITbudgets rom 80 percent maintenanceto 80 percent innovation…” 025%50%75% 62%38%35%12%6%46%49%34%25%4% ImplementingPilot ProjectsImplementingand DeployingNoncriticalApplicationsDeployingMission-criticalApplicationsNo PLansWatching andLearningLarge EnterprisesSmall and Midsize Businesses
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