By David Terrar, CEO of D2C Limited, Co-founder of Cloud Advocates

A new collection of case studies published by the technology trade organisation Intellect highlights customers who have successfully adopted a variety of different cloud solutions.

I must first disclose that I'm chairman of Intellect's Software as a Service Group which published the report, and that two of the case studies included are customers of mine. However, the idea behind the report is to be as "vendor agnostic" as possible and relate the experience of customers using cloud successfully (rather than promote any particular product).

The twelve stories show that every day companies and organisations, both large and small, private and public sector, have switched to cloud systems over the past three years and indicate that this technology choice is beginning to go mainstream.

The trend is endorsed by the latest research from another not for profit trade body, the Cloud Industry Forum. Their white paper 4 includes a poll of over 300 companies and says:

"The results of the survey clearly validate that “cloud” is becoming more common parlance in business language, that the hype continues to give way to practical adoption and that a broad spectrum of organisations are using cloud based services.

Over half (53 per cent) of all organisations polled already consciously use cloud computing in some shape or form within their organisation, this is a 5 point increase or 10 per cent growth in the last nine months.

When further analysis is undertaken it is clear from the findings of the research that it is the private sector leading the way still at 56 per cent adoption (up 3 points) however, public sector has shown the more dramatic increase gaining 11 points to 49 per cent!"

The case studies cover a wide range of Software as a Service applications as follows:

Accounting - Goodman Jones, using Twinfield

Asset Management Solution - Newfoundland Power, Dell

Business Continuity - Merrycon Ltd, Savant

Business Process Efficiency Solution - Connolly Accountants, Celaton

Collaboration - Teleroute, ISL Online and ICAEW, D2C

Contact Management - Cancer Research, Experian QAS

CRM - Royal Academy of Arts, Really Simple Systems and Birmingham Community Alert, HTK

Email and File Encryption Software - Withy King, Egress

Integration - Concep, Alpha Zero Limited

Supply Chain Management - New Look, ediTRACK

The experiences highlight that use of cloud applications has moved on from the early choices of deploying email or implementing a CRM system. There are SaaS options for just about every application a business might need. Cloud options have actually been around for over ten years, but even three years ago they were seen as a novel technology with a bright future. This report shows that the future is now the present.

The free case study digest can be downloaded from www.intellectuk.org

The Cloud Industry Forum's free white papers can be downloaded at: www.cloudindustryforum.org

David Terrar is a consultant and software developer who specialises in the use of Cloud applications and social media in business. He is a co founder of Cloud Advocates, an association of consultants who aim to demystify the Cloud and provide pragmatic help and advice for businesses, organizations and accounting practices. To find out more, visit http://cloudadvocates.com/

Disclosure: David Terrar is chair of Intellect’s Software as a Service group and on the Governance Board for the Cloud Industry Forum’s Code of Practice.

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