Cloud awareness lags in MEA public sector
GOVERNMENTBy BiztechAfrica - April 30, 2012, 9:55 a.m.
Government organisations in the Middle East and Africa (MEA) region have yet to gain a nuanced understanding of cloud computing, and currently demonstrate a relatively low inclination to adopt the technology until they develop greater confidence in it, according to the latest research findings from IDC Government Insights.
A recent survey by international marketing research company IDC revealed that over half of senior government IT decision makers across the MEA region are now familiar or fairly familiar with various cloud technology terms, while fewer than 20% feel they have a strong understanding of cloud computing terminology.
At present, 60% have no interest in deploying any sort of cloud-computing environment within their organizations, highlighting the scale of the mountain that cloud vendors must climb in order to achieve more widespread adoption within the region.
Insights into the attitudes of these decision makers towards cloud computing technology reveal that the vast majority (85%) believe that cloud computing remains an immature/developing technology, in spite of acknowledging that it has the ability to offer significant and tangible benefits (74%). And while the majority believe that cloud computing has clear benefits, there are still widespread concerns regarding cost and bandwidth (72%) and its inherent security risks (68%).
"MEA public sector agencies still need to further explore and gather distinctive proficiency in order to define their business requirements and build a cloud services model that is specifically suited to their operations," says Mukesh Chulani, IDC Government Insights' research manager for the Middle East, Africa, and Turkey.
"Security concerns constitute the greatest deterrent to cloud adoption at present. As government organizations are the key custodians of citizens' information, use of the cloud could expose them to significant risk, with potentially grave liability consequences. This is a risk factor that is greatly hampering adoption in the region."
While security is the number one government concern with regard to cloud adoption, the IDC Government Insights' survey found that a general lack of understanding of the technology, a perception that cloud is unsuited to the government sector, and uncertainty regarding specific cloud providers in the market are further inhibitors to adoption in the region. Additional concerns related to issues such as cost and bandwidth, IT governance, and the ability to integrate cloud with existing systems.
Chulani urges vendors to set about overcoming such concerns by educating internal stakeholders with regard to cloud computing.
"Government organizations in the Middle East and Africa region are simply unaware of how to best take advantage of the cloud delivery model. The technology is disruptive, buyers are sceptical, and hype abounds," he says.
"IT decision makers must help bolster awareness within their organizations by providing educational tools, models, and success stories. An inventory of government organizations' current IT environments would also provide a good indication of whether existing systems contain sensitive or mission-critical data and which workloads are most suitable for migration to the cloud, thus providing an excellent base from which to plan for the cloud."
MORE GOVERNMENT NEWS
Stakeholders demand high infrastructure growth in AfricaStakeholders at the AFRINIC summit say high infrastructure growth rate is required for boosting Internet penetration in African countries like Zambia. Read More
USD5.8 billion for digital migrationHuawei Technologies says its contract to supply Malawi’s digital broadcasting equipment is worth USD5.8 billion. Read More
Côte d’Ivoire adopts Bill on Electronic TransactionsThe Committee on Economic and Financial Affairs of the National Assembly of the Côte d’Ivoire has adopted the new Bill on Electronic Transactions. Read More
Kenyan postal sector to be modernisedThe Kenyan Government has challenged the country’s postal sector to use ICTs to meet new customer demands. Read More
British PM praises AfDB for African infrastructure developmentBritish Prime Minister David Cameron has praised the African Development Bank (AfDB) and President Donald Kaberuka for pioneering initiatives to scale the continent’s infrastructure development. Read More
NCS roots for IT MinistryNigerian IT stakeholders say the country needs a dedicated IT Ministry to support the development of the IT industry. Read More
20th EACO congress set for KenyaThe East African Communications Organisations (EACO) Congress and Exhibition is scheduled to take place in Nairobi, Kenya, this month. Read More
Ministry seeks young innovatorsThe Botswana Ministry of Transport and Communication has launched a competition that targets young innovators in the country. Read More
IBM presents smart traffic plan to Lagos stateA team of IBM experts has presented recommendations to Nigeria's Lagos State Government to ensure that traffic flows more efficiently in the city of Lagos. Read More
FEATURED STORYAirtime transfer big business in Ivory Coast
Airtime transferred direct to mobile is proving popular among consumers and is generating jobs in Ivory Coast.
BEST READ NEWS
IN DEPTHAfrica must think beyond blue collar jobs
Pan-African job creation initiatives need to look beyond basic job creation, to high level ICT skills development, to develop the economies, says Greg Vercellotti, executive director at Dariel Solutions.