Opportunity for cloud providers to help customers align IT transformation with business requirements: 451 Research.

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AWS earns top customer ratings for IaaS but Microsoft Azure emerging as a formidable challenger

Nearly 80% of the organizations polled in 451 Research's latest Voice of the Enterprise (VotE): Cloud Transformation study report that their IT environments require moderate or significant transformation to meet business requirements over the next five years, involving migrating workloads to the cloud and keeping cloud spending on an upward trend.

The latest survey finds that 22% of enterprises have adopted a 'cloud first' approach and infrastructure as a service (IaaS)/public cloud is the fastest-growing cloud model. With organizations increasingly choosing IaaS for mission-critical applications, service provider selection is a critical part of digital transformation. However, the respondents indicate concern about service providers' perceived ability to align IT and business requirements, noting that there is scope for a better understanding of the customers' businesses to support IT service delivery.

"As organizations implement IT transformation in earnest, they are increasingly relying on strategic partners for operational assistance. Those IaaS service providers who position infrastructure and technological innovation alongside meeting business requirements will be best positioned to capitalize on this market opportunity," said Melanie Posey, Research Vice President and lead analyst for 451's Voice of the Enterprise: Cloud Transformation service.

Survey respondents rated their IaaS providers on a range of attributes prior to purchase (promise) and after implementation (fulfillment). IaaS providers received consistently high ratings on both the promise and fulfillment of service attributes such as uptime/performance, security and technical expertise. Although these are table stakes requirements, they are also make-or-break factors that can adversely affect brand reputation.

However, highlighting the importance of the overall customer experience, 451 Research's survey found that organizations gave IaaS providers lower ratings on service-delivery factors such as understanding business requirements, multi-cloud/hybrid cloud support and enterprise-level customer support.

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