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As adoption of the cloud continues to grow, the way organisations use such services will also evolve. Most analysts agree that the time for dabbling in the cloud is over. 2013 is the year that many companies will implement a serious enterprise cloud strategy. Below are ten trends we expect to see during the year ahead.

1) More Growth of Mobile Cloud Computing

We will see an ever increasing trend of people working from home, and using their own device. This will demand a more flexible approach from managers, HR and leadership but also with regards to the tools a company offers its employees to be effective when working from home. The ability to access business functionality

and analytics anytime, anywhere with a broad range of mobile devices will be a fundamental requirement. As a result, we will begin to see convergence of the mobile, in-memory, and the cloud, enabling users to do many things that they couldn't do before.

2)     Increased Importance of Cloud Security -
Cloud computing security will continue to be a concern for companies throughout 2013, whether they’re using a public, private or hybrid cloud.  Organisations are looking for applications and servers located in highly secure data centres that feature an array of physical and network safeguards. Businesses get the pay as you go model, while their service provider keeps the environment stable and safe.

3)     Bring Your Own Cloud (BYOC) Boom -
In 2013, the line between private and public cloud will grow blurry as employees look for solutions that cater to personal and business needs.

Many vendors are now embracing this movement by supporting multiple devices on multiple platforms. Cloud environments for companies will be hybrid with integration and openness playing a significant role to address it.

4)     Focus on Beautiful Applications -
Easy-to-use, beautifully designed cloud applications will be key in 2013 as businesses look to drive employee engagement and collaboration. Expect to see simplicity, speed and a beautiful user experience through visual design to better support the way people work today. This will also deliver value to the enterprise as people use applications more, more business value, more quality of process and data

5)     Need for the Glocal Cloud -
In 2013 companies will increasingly need to think and act globally while servicing partners, customers and employees locally. Expect cloud vendors to find ways of making “glocalization” easy by addressing core elements, such as translation, globalization, and location.

6)     Rise of the Geopolitical Cloud -
In 2013, there will be many reasons to consider "location" and "borders" in cloud computing as how governments perceive those concepts versus how networks do may be at odds

7)     Spotlight on the Clean Cloud -
As global traffic generated by cloud computing services increases, the issue around energy efficiency of cloud will certainly become a hot topic in 2013. Sustainability and innovation will be key in underpinning such efficiency. Forward thinking cloud vendors will incorporate these core pillars into every aspect of their business – from solutions to operations to social investments.

😎     Hybrid Cloud Boom -
Companies will look for a cloud approach that allows them to orchestrate hybrid solution landscapes that best fit their business. Cloud vendors will be looking to drive openness and choice for customers, enabling them to adopt the cloud in an incremental, hybrid solution model that protects and leverages exiting investments, supports change without disruption, and provides customers with the best of both worlds.

9) Rise of the Cloud-based Networked Enterprise -
Powerful cloud-based virtual marketplaces will continue to change the game for companies of all sizes, in all industries, creating a fully ‘Networked Enterprise’. The Networked Enterprise will ultimately create new growth opportunities for our stagnating economy. When companies engage suppliers, partners, and customers in an open, cloud-based and transparent business network, competition - and growth - will thrive. Cloud stands for business execution. The cloud is often discussed in its technical context. But thanks to velocity it brings – innovation for the end user in rapid fashion – it can address business needs and improve business execution as no other technology.

10)  Arrival of Social in all Cloud Solutions -
In 2013 social elements will be in the fabric of all
solutions – not tools on top of other applications. Almost all cloud vendors will begin infusing social in all of their cloud solutions.

Sven Denecken is Vice President and Head of Customer and Market Strategy at SAP. (twitter: @SDenecken)

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