New Zealand case shows why the CFO is “critical” to next phase of cloud adoption

James has more than a decade of experience as a tech journalist, writer and editor, and served as Editor in Chief of TechForge Media between 2017 and 2021. James was named as one of the top 20 UK technology influencers by Tyto, and has also been cited by Onalytica, Feedspot and Zsah as an influential cloud computing writer.

Chief financial officers “hold the keys” to the next phase of cloud adoption, according to analyst house IDC, because they are among the last ones to move into cloud services.

The analysts, who have collected their findings in the latest Asia Pacific cloud survey, say the CFO has an important role to play in terms of moving to a more optimised business model. In other words, it’s to ensure that the CFO sees cloud as a strategic differentiator for companies, as opposed to just being a cost-cutting exercise.

IDC believes that this won’t be an overnight change, but will be “balanced in the short term by the rest of the CXO table.”

The Asia-Pacific report, of 2,300 businesses, examines how in New Zealand 100% of organisations polled have a cloud budget forecast by 2016. Almost four in five (79%) claim they are using between two and five cloud services already.

Similarly, the researchers note a correlation between enabling business projects and barriers to adoption decreasing was noted. The most frequently cited pain point was ensuring data was secure, according to 36% of respondents. This was followed by constraints of legacy architecture, cited by 16% of those polled.

Yet overall it was New Zealand, considered the fourth most mature Asia Pacific cloud nation excluding Japan, which was praised for its approach in the report.

Cloud is bringing the competitive landscape of NZ businesses closer than ever before

Adam Dodds, IDC New Zealand research manager, said: “Cloud is bringing the competitive landscape of NZ businesses closer than ever before. All business sizes and industries are adopting to the opportunity of leveraging compute services provided from outside of their premises to create go to market and business operations opportunities.

“The challenge to all is how you untangle your legacy infrastructure and align your organisation – with people and processes – to adopt cloud appropriately,” he added.

New Zealand’s prowess in the Asia Pacific arena was also noted by the Asian Cloud Computing Association (ACCA), who placed NZ second only to Japan in its latest rankings, calling it an “ever-ready leader.”

Compare and contrast with the 2012 verdict, which placed New Zealand in sixth, noting improvements in freedom of information and data privacy but placing dead last in international connectivity. This year, while still being the area of weakness, NZ outscored the four lowest ranked nations – China, Indonesia, India and Vietnam – as well as its Pacific rival Australia. New Zealand scored highest in green policy.

Do you agree with the view of the CFO in cloud?

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