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Cloud computing slugs it out with legacy

Adoption of cloud computing has reached a tipping point  - but don’t expect legacy systems to disappear for at least two more decades according to Paul Daugherty, chief technology architect of Accenture.

Speaking at the SuiteWorld conference in San Francisco Mr Daugherty said that Accenture, which is a systems integration partner with NetSuite, has now completed 1,700 cloud projects. “We initially saw interest in solving very specific issues. Now there are broader roadmaps for cloud,” he said.

The three key drivers to enterprises adopting cloud computing was that it was seen as an antidote for complexity, offered lower cost and faster rollouts, he said.

But according to Mr Daugherty legacy systems will not be replaced for the next two decades at least, with cloud running in parallel to older platforms.
“This year our clients are adding more Cobol code than they are retiring, but they are using the cloud for innovation.”

He added that the advent of cloud computing offerings from the likes of SAP, which bought SuccessFactors for $US3.4 billion earlier this year in order to vault into cloud computing, and Oracle had “increased the credibility of Software as a Service as a foundation” for enterprise class computing. As a result he anticipated considerably more growth in the future.

Jim McGeever, NetSuite chief operating officer, who today named Accenture NetSuite’s worldwide partner of the year also outlined how the growing ecosystems around cloud computing are accelerating adoption.

He acknowledged that; “Momentum is a very hard thing to get, but a very easy thing to lose,” and that “the only way we make money is if you (customers) continue to renew.”

For NetSuite to maintain the momentum on its own would be a challenge, but Mr McGeever pointed to the fast growing NetSuite ecosystem which is helping the company maintain its fast growth. He said that there were now 5,500 developers working on the NetSuite platform, which had created 8,500 Suite Apps, and 18,000 installations.

Beverley Head attended SuiteWorld as a guest of NetSuite


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