UK firms are turning to the cloud as three-quarters of IT directors say their on-premise applications are becoming too "bloated".
However, although cost reduction remains the biggest driver for cloud migrations, many public cloud services are not meeting businesses' exact needs, according to research.
IT services firm Damovo commissioned research among 100 UK IT directors and found that 72 percent think their on-premise applications are becoming too bloated.
Many find that some functionality of on-premise applications is unnecessary for their needs and only adds to the cost of upgrading to the latest version.
As a result, they are turning to the cloud in order to regain control over the make-up of the software packages they deploy, with 62 percent saying that cost reduction is the main driver behind cloud adoption.
However, despite these benefits, over three quarters (77 percent) of IT directors believe that public cloud services can be "vanilla" and don't offer as much flexibility as they'd like for customising applications.
"Organisations are increasingly finding they have a whole host of application functionality that goes unused," said Alex Williams, operations director for Damovo UK & Ireland. "Unfortunately, businesses end up paying for this functionality when they upgrade to the latest version, whether they want it or not."
Williams said: "Cloud services are the natural remedy, giving businesses back control over which functions they buy and cutting down the bloat in on-premise applications. However, whilst they do offer cost savings and greater flexibility in some respects, the limited ability to customise public cloud services can make them unsuitable for businesses with more specific requirements."
Integrating cloud services with existing on-premise applications can also create a challenge, with 60 percent of IT directors claiming that such concerns have delayed their decision to move to the cloud.
When asked about which applications they feel most comfortable putting in the cloud, 78 percent pointed to basic office applications such as Microsoft Office and Google Apps, including email.
The second most highly ranked option was telephony and contact centres, cited by 73 percent.
There are however lingering concerns over security, with 60 percent of IT directors citing payroll as the application they feel least comfortable putting in the cloud.
"Many businesses have customised their on-premise applications around specific processes, so the challenge of integrating them with standardised public cloud services is understandably a concern," said Williams.
"Private cloud solutions can offer the best of both worlds, enabling businesses to build a cloud around their specific requirements and integrate it seamlessly with existing IT, whilst also benefiting from the cost and innovation benefits of public cloud."