FS cloud move hampered by skills, security issues

UK financial services organisations are rapidly embracing new cloud-enabled technologies to transform the ways they operate and serve customers, although skills shortages, security barriers and worries about compliance are standing in the way of digital transformation.

This is according to research from the Cloud Industry Forum (CIF) and Aryaka, which surveyed 250 IT and business decision-makers at UK-based financial services organisations with 50 or more employees and IT procurement budgets averaging £8 million per year.

Although 78 per cent of financial services business have a digital transformation strategy, 64 per cent stated that they lack the skills they need for successful implementation. In addition, well over half (58 per cent) agreed that their cloud security posture needed to be improved, and a similar proportion (52 per cent) were not confident in their ability to meet their regulatory obligations.

Nearly all respondents (96 per cent) currently use cloud-based services, with 87 per cent expecting to increase their usage over the next 12 months. Within three years, the amount spent on cloud infrastructure (18 per cent) is set to surpass that spent on on-premise (11 per cent), as financial services businesses decommission legacy technologies and embrace new ways of working.

Ian McEwan, senior vice president of international sales at Aryaka, said: “With cloud spend set to surpass that of on-premise infrastructure in the next three years, how they achieve this is more relevant than ever and it is critical that the move to the cloud does not compromise security, regulatory and compliance requirements.”

Alex Hilton, chief executive of the CIF, added: “The shift towards placing a greater reliance on trusted third parties is freeing up IT teams to focus on activities that can deliver comprehensive business change.

“However, it’s important that these changes are underpinned by a rock-solid foundation of security, and that financial services have the right skills and partners in place to support their ongoing transformations – and the research confirms there’s work yet to do on that front.”

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