According to IDC research, IT spending across industries will grow 4.5 percent this year and another 4 percent next year, with cloud and mobile largely responsible for those increases. A new Extreme Networks survey of network managers, many of whom work in higher education institutions, gives insight into which cloud services are seeing the greater adoption.
About 60 percent of survey respondents said they are using the cloud for email. Four in 10 are storing data in the cloud. About one-third plan to move their learning management systems to the cloud within five years. 17 percent have implemented a cloud-managed network and another 45 percent are evaluating these solutions.
Traditionally, security concerns have been an obstacle to cloud adoption, but that narrative has begun to change. In fact, the Extreme Networks study found that the top reason for moving IT services to the cloud was improved security (cited by 76 percent of respondents), followed by easy access to resources (60 percent) and management efficiency (53 percent). With less time spent on day-to-day security, support and management tasks, institutions can reallocate those resources to higher-value projects.
However, adopting cloud services is not the same thing as having a cloud strategy. Many factors must be taken into account, including performance, security and regulatory compliance. An often-overlooked concern is application and data integration. Each time a new cloud application or service is made available, data tends to be separated into silos. This can negate many of the efficiency benefits of the cloud, and even put critical data at risk.
The problem tends to become more acute wen departments procure cloud applications and services outside the aegis of IT. For example, marketing and sales personnel might sign up for a new app to support their efforts, but they rarely consider data sharing and integration. Because most institutions use different clouds for different purposes and cloud resources are so easy to acquire and access, data can easily become fragmented and even trapped in various cloud applications.
That’s why higher education institutions need to consider data integration when developing a cloud strategy. Data in cloud silos is no better than data in traditional, on-premises silos. Cloud-based applications and systems must be able to communicate without bogging down IT.
The Axiom Elite integrated data management solution makes it easy to capture data from one source and integrate it with data from another source. Axiom Elite provides two-way communication between your student information system, enterprise resource planning platform, and third-party applications and data sources. Data is automatically collected, validated and uploaded directly into your student information system so you have a single version of the truth. Axiom Elite can also be customized to match your institution’s data sources, business logic and workflows.
Without a data integration strategy, adopting cloud services can add layers of complexity that negate many of the benefits of the cloud. Let us show you how Axiom Elite simplifies data management and integration so you can take full advantage of the flexibility and cost-efficiency of the cloud.