Unanticipated cloud computing implementation and maintenance costs are causing a “cloud hangover” for many enterprises, according to a survey released this week by Sungard Availability Services. The company found that execution and maintenance of clouds both cost more than anticipated, while some costs remain hidden until cloud services are operational.
Sungard AS surveyed nearly 250 enterprise IT decision makers in August regarding organizations’ experiences, investments, and satisfaction with cloud environments. Sixty-three percent spent $150,000 or more implementing cloud services, up from 50 percent in 2013, and almost three out of four (74 percent) spent $30,000 or more in monthly maintenance costs on top of their initial investment. Eighty percent said they pay more now for integration, a key concern given the popularity of hybrid solutions.
Organizations identified a range of costs that only became understood after cloud implementation, and which cost 70 percent of respondents at least $150,000. Thirty-six percent had extra costs from upgrades, and 35 percent each from customization and internal maintenance related to patching, data recovery, and compliance software. Over 30 percent also named each of consultancy and staffing as sources of additional cost.
“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 AS. “For many enterprises, the cloud can bring great efficiencies for the right workloads. We work with our customers from the outset to identify what can be optimized by shifting to the cloud and what may be best suited to perform best in a hybrid approach.”
In addition to hybrid service vendors like Sungard AS that offer network optimization as part of their value proposition, enterprises can deploy solutions from cloud management firms like Cloud Cruiser, Cloudyn, RightScale, or Cloudability, which acquired RipFog in August to big data analytics capabilities as the market for such services grows.