In London, ESG's Steve Duplessie and Senior IT Veteran Stephen O'Donnell discuss the rate of cloud adoption in Western Europe.
Watch more of this series, ESG On Location in London with Stephen O'Donnell: IT Transformation and BREXIT in Western Europe and Disaster Recovery in Western Europe
Steve: Hey there, I'm Steve Duplessie, and I'm happy to be joined by a longtime IT industry veteran and rockstar, Steve O'Donnell. How are you doing, Stephen?
Stephen: I'm doing really well Steve. How are you?
Steve: Fantastic. I'm having a great time here in London, finding some interesting folk to talk to about what's going on specifically in Western Europe, when it comes to all things IT. What have you been focused on recently?
Stephen: Well, there still a continuing move towards cloud services. It's not as fast as people were predicting, I think, but it's relentless, it's happening. And I think we're seeing more and more software services rather than infrastructure services being adopted. So folks, rather than building their own Oracle accounting finance systems, HR systems, they are buying it in the cloud.
Steve: There buying SaaS..
Stephen: They're buying Office 365. Exactly so, because, in the main, these are commodity products. And you're not going to get a big commercial advantage by running your Office 365 cloud environment better than the next guy. But those companies through IT really as a competitive advantage are still doing stuff either in-house, or they're doing it on like an Amazon platform or an Azure platform.
And actually, surprisingly, I think surprisingly from a few years ago, Microsoft are doing really well. Their connectivity with the enterprise, with the Windows platforms, is really playing through, and it's been able to leverage that.
Steve: Their financial results would indicate you are accurate.
Stephen: They seem to be executing better than most.
Steve: Fairly, fairly well. So it is interesting you talk about the cloud, because we know empirically, in recent research, if I went back two years ago, Europe was only half as stated aggressive to get to the cloud. Now it's almost exactly equal with North America. So we saw a huge gain last year. And at the very least, Europeans are saying, "No, no, no... We're going to go with a more cloud-first strategy." I'm not sure that is implemented as of yet, but from a philosophical perspective people have definitely bought in, it seems.
Stephen: Yeah, that's right, Steven. The thing is that, it's one of these things where, half in and half out isn't actually very good, because what you have to do is you have to have your own data center with really big links into potentially multiple service providers, Oracle, Amazon, Azure, etc. So it's quite a complex network infrastructure with potential latency issues.
And you if need resilience, you need to have cloud and multiple different zones, then you need to think about that too, disaster recovery. And I think that as businesses start to go more and more cloud, they are going to go more and more cloud faster and faster because the imperative to get rid of the stuff that's left will be stronger.