Cloud computing represents a paradigm shift away from today’s decentralised IT systems. It is already transforming providers of IT services and it will change the way other industrial sectors provision their IT needs as end users, as well the way citizens interact with their computer and their mobile devices. Cloud computing, although in its early days, is already a commercial reality and the adoption rate of cloud computing services is growing.
The EU needs to become not only cloud friendly but cloud active to fully realise the benefits of cloud computing. Besides allowing for the provision of cloud computing in its various forms, the relevant environment in the EU has to address the needs of the end users and protect the right of citizens. At the same time, it should allow for the development of a strong industry in this sector of Europe.
by the Forbes Magazine, Cloud computing will potentially
generate at least 14 million new jobs across the globe within the next three
years. Moreover, these new jobs may likely be in many areas outside of IT.
conducted by International Data Corporation (IDC)
and sponsored by Microsoft Corp.,
looking at the economic benefits of cloud computing in the years ahead. A
couple of months back, a Microsoft-underwritten study by the London School of
Economics projected substantial job growth in two industries: smartphones and
The main issues to be adressed are:
– « Green » practices, business benefits and migration plans
– The ‘business case’ of cloud computing and its corporate value
– How do Cloud Computing and Green ICT change the way ICT departments operate?
It is important to think ahead and anticipate trends in the workplace in order to prepare the next generation and steer current employees for their future jobs. Microsoft certifications are plotted against a skills roadmap , incorporating new skills for the cloud, that match developments in industry to talent pools. People that have validated skills that are transferable across industries and across boundaries will play a significant role in Europe meeting its goals for 2020.
It is becoming clear that all organizations adopting (or considering to adopt) the cloud, whether public or private, acknowledge this technology as a tool for better management. In other words, cloud computing is not just regarded as a way to cut costs and access new resources and processes, but also as a transformative tool by which business strategies, business models, competition and innovation can be improved and qualitatively changed.
Europe, and the skills challenge
Identifying and mastering the most profitable aspects of cloud computing will require the development of specific skills at all levels of public and private organizations. Such skills will include for example the ability to think strategically across platforms, sectors and functions. It will also include a distinct capacity to identify new opportunities by which existing comparative advantages can be leveraged through cloud computing. This calls for innovative and curious minds that are able to spot relevant experiences from other firms, other sectors and other countries.
Can European businesses and public entities identify and mobilize such skills in the short run? If they do not already have them on board, how can they attract and keep them? How can private business, universities and governments cooperate to generate them? Thus are some of the questions that will need to be addressed rapidly, imaginatively and decisively if cloud computing is to fully play its role as a competitiveness booster and as a game changer in Europe, as it has started to do in other parts of the world.
By: Bruno Lanvin , Executive Director, eLab, INSEAD