Industry opinions: Cloud service providers

So far we’ve taken a look at the benefits that particular industry sectors are seeing from their cloud migrations, and what qualities they look for in a cloud services provider. Today we’ll focus on  what executives are saying about the providers themselves.

Please indicate your agreement with the following statements about cloud and managed services providers. (Top 2-box scores) Click to enlargeWindstreamQ25all

As you can see, a majority of respondents say cloud providers add measurable value to their business results. Among industries surveyed, financial services are seeing the most value—70% of respondents said their provider adds value—while only half of respondents from retail say that.

Professional services firms are the most likely among our industry respondents to expect a pre-sales technical consultation (54%), while government/education companies are the least likely (37%). Meanwhile, healthcare companies are significantly less likely to see cloud hosting as a commodity service (28%), while government/education is the industry most likely to see cloud as a commodity (46%).

Government/education organizations are also the least likely to say their provider adds measurable value to their operating processes, at 25%—but are the most likely to say their service provider works to tailor solutions to their needs, at 27%.

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Choosing a cloud provider: Industry preferences

One of the most important aspects of any cloud migration is selecting a cloud services provider. As you can see in the chart below, our survey respondents are most concerned about price when it comes to their providers.

How important are the following qualities in a cloud service provider? Click to enlargeWindstreamQ25Total

But respondents in some industries surveyed—especially professional and financial services firms—have slightly different priorities. The top pick for financial services is service-level agreements (69%), while professional services firms ranked pre-sales engineering as top pick.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, given the nature of their business, healthcare respondents are significantly more likely to rank compliance as a top quality (67%); meanwhile, professional services firms are significantly more likely to rank transparency into operations and performance (62%), whereas transparency is less important to financial services (43%).

The takeaway for providers? It makes sense to tailor offerings and solutions to different industries.

Cloud survey results: Profitable firms get more from their vendors

We asked our 350 survey respondents what they expect and value from their cloud service providers (you can click on the chart below to enlarge it).

Please indicate your agreement with the following statements about cloud and managed services providers. (“Agree” and “Strongly Agree” responses)WindstreamQ25

As you can see, larger firms expect more from providers, like pre-sales technical consultations and tailored offerings.

Other key variances show a correlation between profitability and the vendor relationship:

  • Companies with profit margins over 10% are also more likely to say their service providers add measurable value (72%, compared with 44% of firms with negative or flat profit margins).
  • Companies with smaller profit margins are also significantly less likely to say their service provider adds measurable value to operating processes, works to tailor solutions to their needs, and to say those tailored offerings are a core value proposition for providers.