More than half of public sector IT workers have not used G-Cloud in the past year, while just a quarter say cloud adoption is an important challenge for the next year, a study has said.
The survey, commissioned by cloud services provider Exponential-e, asked 80 public sector IT senior managers and officials about their organisation’s digital transformation efforts and cloud adoption.
It found that 58% of respondents had not used the government’s cloud procurement platform G-Cloud in the last year, while a further 21% said they had used it just once. Only 8% said they had used it more than five times.
When asked if they might use G-Cloud in the next 12 months, 49% said it was possible, while 27% said it was unlikely or highly unlikely.
In addition, just 27% said that cloud adoption was of considerable or high importance – most respondents (29%) were instead neutral about its importance to their work over the next year.
The biggest challenge appeared to be digital transformation as a broad term, with 57% ranking it as considerable or high importance.
However, Exponential-e argued that the organisations’ drive to digitisation could be helped by an increased use of the cloud.
“Many public sector organisations are missing the opportunity which cloud provides to cost-effectively support innovative digital transformation initiatives,” said David Lozdan, head of public sector at the company.
The company’s statement referenced recent sales figures for G-Cloud, which show that just £73m of the total £1.39bn sales to date are from local government. Lozdan said that these organisations could benefit from increased use of the platform.
This study adds weight to the evidence of previous studies that have shown a poor take-up of cloud services and G-Cloud, particularly in local government.
A recent analysis of 418 UK councils, carried out by the not-for-profit IT services provider Eduserv, said that 44% were not using the cloud and 58% had not used G-Cloud.
Indeed, of those who said they had used G-Cloud, the 50 councils with the biggest budgets accounted for 90% of the total sales from the overall total at the time of the survey.
The Exponential-e study suggested that one concern about using the cloud could be data sovereignty, with 33% saying it would stop them using public cloud services as part of a digital transformation programme.
However, some issues around data security in the cloud could be addressed by an increase in the number of data centres being located in the UK. Microsoft recently announced the Ministry of Defence had chosen its cloud services after UK-based data centres meant that the confidential data it holds would not leave the UK.
Further questions in the survey showed that organisations are increasing their focus on compliance and security, with 54% saying it was of considerable or high importance, and information lifecycle management (42%).
In addition, the results suggest apprehension about the results of the June referendum on European Union membership – 41% of respondents thought Brexit would have significant impact on their organisation, while a further 34% were unsure about what it meant for them.