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So it's that time of year again. As it comes to an end, I am sure you will all agree 2016 was a pretty hectic. This week I am working from home, and decided to look back at my predictions from last time and see how close (or far) I actually was. If you are interested, my original post can be found here.

Prediction 1 - Azure will become a key directive for 'as-a-service' enterprises.

This prediction was spot-on the money. Microsoft Azure growth as shot up by 102% year on year. This is down to the forever increasing number of services and the commitment to providing a compliant and secure cloud. The introduction and release of their UK data centres saw the likes of the Ministry of Defence move their services into the cloud. 

This isn't the end for the likes of AWS. they are still ahead of the curve when it comes to revenue and market share, but they are certainly beginning to feel the heat. 

Prediction 2 - Office365 will encourage BYOD

We are seeing an enormous uptake in flexible working and new strategies that take the user's perspective first. Microsoft have put significant investment in tools such as Intune, Azure Active Directory and identity services. Users are now able to use their own iPhones while on the train, updating a document to send to their favourite customer.

Prediction 3 - IT Departments will become cloud brokers and service providers

 Although not quite mainstream yet, many businesses are beginning to realise that their existing org structures and processes aren't quite flexible enough to get a true ROI on a cloud first policy. Businesses are now looking at ways they can shift the thinking so that they can become more agile, flexible and automated to pass innovation back to their users. 

We can see organisations making this move with the uptake of our Cloud Accelerate offerings. More and more are asking us how they can get from a mode 1 organisation to a mode 2, cloud first powerhouse.

 

Prediction 4 - I will blog more

Ok, this one didn't happen! Not quite what I was looking for, but that is what new years resolutions are all about isn't it?

Going cloud first will be the theme for 2017!

Paul Sanders

So what about 2017? The general theme of this will be cloud, cloud and more cloud!

Prediction 1 - Cloud First Principles

Businesses have already dipped their toes in the world of cloud. Chances are they have either Dev/Test, SaaS or payroll solutions already running in other data centres on a pay as you go model. This is only going to expand. We are regular being asked by our customers on how to change their architectural principles and policies to help drive the cloud first mentality. 

These businesses will start to change the way in which they procure suppliers, work with partners and develop in-house capabilities with their end goal in mind. 

Prediction 2 - No more private cloud

I have said this a few times across my various social channels... but businesses will start to see that their isn't much benefit to adopting a 'private cloud' pattern nowadays. With the rate of change within the public cloud market, simply investing into on-premises private cloud projects will be seen as a waste of capital. 

Don't get me wrong, there will still be a period of on-prem environments, these will always be needed for legacy applications that cannot fit within the cloud model.

Prediction 3 - SaaS and PaaS become the norm

So this is an interesting one I keep hearing... To get the full benefit of public cloud, it makes sense to use services further up the stack that just Infrastructure as a Service. Many businesses and even suppliers do not realise that simply spinning up a virtual machine on a cloud platform gives little benefit (other than power, cooling and data centre costs). The real benefit to cloud is using Software as a Services or Platform as a Services... where true scalability and  availability start to shine. 

2017 will be the year of the application analyst, who will be re-mapping existing applications to either off to shelve services or re-architect to fit within the cloud.

It would be good to hear what you guys think... am I on the money, or way off the mark?

About the author

Paul Sanders is the CEO & Founder of Yobah. He has spent over 10 years working with businesses on transforming their IT Function into internal service providers. With a passion for architect and strategy design, his skills focus on driving efficiencies by designing processes that are logical. 

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