Moving to the cloud is the key to succeeding in the digital era. Many business leaders in Africa are making this move to improve security, flexibility, and agility whilst others are doing it to keep relevant and productive, ultimately with the bottom line in mind.
Before the pandemic hit, businesses were at different stages of their cloud strategies, whether that meant moving their email server to the cloud or upgrading to Google cloud or Microsoft 365. This process has been accelerated as many workers were forced to work remotely.
According to a Synergy Research Group survey, spending on cloud infrastructure bypassed spending on data centre hardware and software for the first time in 2020. This study shows that spending on cloud infrastructure services (PaaS, IaaS, and hosted private cloud combined) grew by 35 percent to reach almost $130 billion in 2020, while spending on data centre hardware and software dropped more than 5 percent to less than $90 billion over the same period.
An increasing number of African businesses are reaching a pinnacle of their digital transformation journeys with most of their IT already running in the cloud. However, it’s not only about having a cloud strategy but rather knowing how to use the cloud to its full extent to propel a business into the future. Cloud is giving organisations the ability to simplify and scale their systems landscape without sacrificing performance.
With this in mind, a number of cloud providers have been trying to set base in the continent. Recently, Zadaraannounced Africa’s largest network of interconnected, carrier-and cloud-neutral data center facilities, Africa Data Centres, and service provider Global Sense deployed Zadara’s edge cloud services to their marketplace. In South Africa, HUAWEI opened applications for its Women4Tech digital training programme. The free online course is open to savvy, tech-forward women entrepreneurs, and aims to advance their skills and help them use new technologies like Cloud Computing to grow, improve and digitise their businesses.
At the same time, Google Cloud also appointed Niral Patel as Regional Director for Sub-Saharan Africa. Patel will be based in Johannesburg and will be responsible for leading Google Cloud’s business across Sub-Saharan Africa region.
As we have mentioned in a previous column, with cloud-enabled intelligent enterprise capabilities, organisations can achieve the speed needed to stay ahead of competitors and other disruptors while maintaining the certainty of measured, data-driven decision-making.