5 fascinating facts from the latest OpenStack user survey


By Lionel Gibbons | May 06, 2016 | OpenStack, OpenStack Summit



openstack-admin.jpgThere’s no denying it — OpenStack is the real deal. We’ve seen cloud technologies come and go, and many a pundit has predicted that OpenStack would follow suit. But the reality is that OpenStack has taken root and is starting to grow very nicely, thank you very much. The OpenStack Foundation has been conducting surveys since 2013, and I always find it fascinating to read through the results to see how the world of OpenStack is developing. Let’s take a look at some of the highlights from the latest survey.

  1. OpenStack is growing up — This year’s survey drew responses from more than 1100 organizations. That’s up 25% from last year, and could be a sign that OpenStack is maturing. A key finding of the latest survey is that the percentage of deployments that are moving to production stage is higher. 97% of respondents said that being able to standardize on the APIs used to access both public and private cloud resources was in their top five considerations for using OpenStack. That’s up from 60% in the survey taken six months ago. Other top priorities were avoiding vendor lock-in (92%), accelerating innovation (79%), increasing operational efficiency (75%) and saving money (66%).

  2. IT is where it’s at! — While OpenStack can be used in any industry, the lion’s share of OpenStack deployments are in the IT industry. At 68%, IT leads second place Telecommunications (14%), and third place Academic/Research (9%) by a huge margin.

  3. Out of the lab, and into the real world  —Some OpenStack detractors have been quick to label it as an “open source experiment,” but the reality is that OpenStack has proven itself at enterprise scale. Most deployments today are happening in companies with between 1,000 and 10,000 employees — companies that most would place squarely in the “enterprise” bucket. Clearly OpenStack has made it to the big leagues already, and plans to stay there for some time.

  4. A global happening — North America is still home base for OpenStack, but it’s making real strides across the globe. Most of the survey respondents (46%) were from North America, but there was good representation from Europe (24%) and Asia (24%) as well. Clearly OpenStack is not confined to any geographical niche.

  5. OpenStack's Oscar Moment — One way to tell if you’re doing a good job is to ask customers if they would recommend you to a friend. In keeping with the metric-centric world we live in, this concept has been turned into a score that companies use to see how they compare to competitors. OpenStack’s overall Net Promoter Score came in at 29 in the latest survey, which is in the top 20–25% of software companies. And it’s moving in the right direction, going from a score of 20 to 29 year over year. Not bad. With all that positive feedback, I like to imaging OpenStack responding the way Sally Field did in her infamous “You Like Me” moment at the Oscars.

All Grown Up

Those are the highlights that caught my attention when I read through the April 2016 OpenStack user survey. Overall, OpenStack is growing. It’s growing in the number of deployments. It’s growing in maturity. It’s growing in favor with cloud professionals around the globe.

While remaining the darling of DevOps devotees everywhere, OpenStack is clearly crossing the line and becoming an enterprise-grade solution.

If you get a chance, take a look at the survey and share your thoughts on its findings. I'd love to hear what you think.

Bright OpenStack