IDC Report Examines Customers’ Leading Requirements and Provider Preferences for Cloud-Based Application Development and Testing Services

Framingham, MA (May 6, 2009) – In search of greater cost efficiencies and faster times to market for application development and testing services, large enterprises are looking towards cloud-based outsourcing models as the next virtual frontier. Although companies are still in the early stages of evaluating when and how to best leverage these services, a recent IDC study shows organizations already have expectations for highly efficient, secure, and reliable environments.

IDC’s research also finds that while customers are beginning to experience some of the positive operational and financial advantages tied to the use of new platforms, such as Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) and Testing-as-a-Service (TaaS), they are equally concerned with the limitations and challenges.

“Success as a provider in cloud-based application services will require players to prove themselves in the areas of reliability, security, availability, performance, and SLA management. Large enterprises, across all industry sectors, are concerned with the support, security, and stability they need to rely on as they look to scale applications in a private, public, or hybrid cloud-like environment,” stated Rona Shuchat, director, Application Outsourcing Services.

Additional key findings from this research include the following:

  • Nearly 30% of respondents cited the need to have 24×7 support from cloud environments, similar to current operations support in a dedicated IT environment. This was followed closely by security of data and reliable performance under heavy load.
  • Close to half of the companies surveyed selected full service outsourcers/system integrators as the leading provider they would choose to support cloud-based application development and testing environments. One-quarter selected an ISV, with significantly fewer choosing a software-as-a-service (SaaS) or next-generation PaaS provider.
  • With the proliferation of these cloud-based service platforms, there are new opportunities for traditional outsourcers and cloud providers to offer customers a range of offerings including robust data governance programs, consolidated security test services, and next-generation bundled application lifecycle services.

This IDC study, Cloud-Based Application Development and Test Services: Customers’ Leading Requirements and Provider Preferences (IDC #217995) is based on a survey of 400 IT and line of business executives. The report highlights customer perceptions of top criteria and providers they would select if procuring cloud-based application development or testing services. End user benefits, challenges, and adoption trends are also highlighted in the use of virtual environments for testing or platform-as-a-service.

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