According to Cisco we’re in a second wave of cloud adoption, with the number of enterprises moving to the cloud through hybrid and full solutions fast rising. Eighty-four per cent are using some form of cloud, compared to 48% in 2010 according to the Cloud Industry Forum. The early adopters tended to be cutting edge and smaller companies, attracted to innovative new technology or the ease of no longer having to manage infrastructure. Larger organisations as a breed tend to be more cautious, so mass adoption among these has only more recently become the norm.

[easy-tweet tweet=”84% of enterprises are now using #Cloud in some way” user=”comparethecloud”]

As bigger businesses have made the move the conversations around cloud computing have changed: no longer debating the benefits of the cloud, but taking a more strategic approach. In the early days cost was consistently touted as the key driver, according to a recent Harvard Business Review Analyst Services report collaboration and business agility are now the top motivators.

With cloud services such as Dropbox and iCloud a daily part of the tech savvy consumers’ life, a demand has been created for the same level of speed, convenience and efficiency in the business world. As a result, cloud services are rapidly evolving to support enterprises and take advantage of this current demand.

Business collaboration services in particular have grown in prominence, the fast growth of new platforms like Slack, alongside more established tools like SharePoint and Google Drive is evidence for this.

Introducing a collaborative element to an enterprise workforce can significantly increase efficiency by encouraging more teams to work together, benefiting from others’ knowledge and expertise.

central IT and business units are increasingly making decisions together

As the cloud has evolved, central IT and business units are increasingly making decisions together. Allowing business operations to move quicker, departments to work more cooperatively and easing and automating processes, the cloud has given business leaders more information, and more time to make better informed business decisions. Consequently, more varied enterprise level services alongside more effective and faster reporting services are emerging to help businesses gain this value.

This is one particular area that we’ve seen a lot of uptake and development in recently. Microsoft for example has blogged extensively on creating reports and scorecards for SharePoint. Auditing and reporting tools are enabling enterprises to gain insight into a number areas of IT software, from migration milestones to unused services and licenses. By understanding where tools are going unused, organisations are able to better control software spending. Auditing tools are seeing significant uptake because they have the ability to make organisations more efficient and focus spending in necessary areas.

[easy-tweet tweet=”Auditing and reporting tools are enabling enterprises to gain insight into #IT #software” user=”comparethecloud”]

The continued growth in the number of enterprises adopting cloud services is only going to produce more products and drive further innovation. A key part of demand has, and will continue to be a driver for even greater efficiency, to make better business decisions and get things done quicker. Growth among enterprise tools is enabling big businesses to adopt and benefit from the same levels of efficiency, agility and innovation as the most disruptive startups, which can only be a positive thing.

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Alan Byrne, director and co-founder of Cogmotive Alan is Director and co-founder of Cogmotive. In 2011 after moving to the UK, Alan consulted on large scale migrations to Office 365. It was here that he first saw a critical business need for information relating to Office 365 emerging from different parts of a project and across an organisation. Alan saw an opportunity to bring together his previous Software Development, Microsoft Systems Administration and Management skills with the understanding of customers that he had gained throughout his career to co-found Cogmotive, a company that specialises in finding intuitive software based solutions to problems that many Systems Administrators face on a daily basis.