Cautious corporate behavior seen holding back cloud development

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Brazil's corporate cultural behavior of risk aversion is one of the strongest barriers to further development of cloud computing in the country, Gartner analysts Ione de Almeida Coco and Cassio Dreyfuss said.

Speaking at a press conference on the role of the CIO, taking place at the Gartner ITxpo conference in São Paulo, the analysts said the country's CIOs - and chief information officers of large companies in particular - are more averse to engaging in new, "unknown" technologies, fearing risks more than their US counterparts, for instance, who are more venturesome in that sense.

Although local executives tend to prefer having outcomes predicted, the Gartner analysts called on CIOs to consider different scenarios with all possible outcomes.

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Both analysts said they had originally expected the cloud to see faster adoption in Brazil. But while there are some new initiatives - mostly concerning private clouds from a few major companies - they now feel it will take longer to develop than in other countries.

Today's market doubts are similar to those of CIOs 20 years ago regarding outsourcing, which at the time was a little-known business model, they said.

"But you have to take some initial, cautious steps, and then see how the cloud works for your company, [to define] which approach works better," Dreyfuss said.

"I use to say to the CIOs who come to talk to us, 'If you don't lead the race toward the cloud, you'll be left behind,'" added Coco, who highlighted the scalability the model offers and its flexibility in terms of investments.

The Gartner analysts added that some traditional IT players, such as Microsoft, IBM, Oracle and SAP, "are already preparing themselves to enter these new cloud models."

Companies' IT departments need to change their way of thinking in light of the IT segment's new characteristics as a whole, where the user is approaching the expert level, Dreyfuss said. "I'd say it's necessary that the IT area sees itself more in terms of a service provider than a service executor."