Covid-19 accelerates the digital transformation


More modern apps, AI and edge solutions Covid-19 accelerates the digital transformation

F5, provider of cloud and security solutions, has published the seventh edition of its annual State of Application Strategy (SOAS) report. The study shows how the corona pandemic has driven digital transformation with telemetry and multi-cloud.

Company on the subject

Since the last SOAS report, the acceptance of AI and machine learning has more than tripled. (Image: © – putilov_denis –

According to F5, the State of Application Strategy (SOAS) report is based on a survey of 1,500 participants from various industries, company sizes and positions. According to this, companies should above all improve connectivity, reduce latency times, guarantee security and use data-driven insights. There is increasing interest in cloud and as-a-service solutions, edge computing and technologies for the security and provision of applications.

Modern apps and AI on the rise

Since last year’s SOAS report, the acceptance of AI and machine learning has more than tripled to 56 percent. This means that more and more companies are in the late phase of digital transformation.

According to F5, 57 percent of respondents have tackled digital expansion, an increase of 37 percent over the previous year. This shows an increased focus on the automation of business processes, orchestration and digital workflows in order to integrate applications. 77 percent would already be modernizing internal or customer-oriented apps. That is 133 percent more than in the previous year.

In addition, two-thirds of respondents use at least two methods for creating modern workloads. Of the companies with only one method, 44 percent say they use modern interfaces, either via APIs or components such as containers.

More than half of the respondents already use infrastructure as code. Organizations using this approach would be twice as likely to deploy applications more frequently. They are also four times more likely to use fully automated application pipelines.


The vast majority of companies continue to use both traditional and modern applications and architectures. At 87 percent, that’s 11 percent more than in 2020. Almost half of all companies – 30 percent more than last year – manage at least five different architectures.

For almost half of all participants, the pandemic was the main reason for the more frequent use of the cloud and SaaS. More than two-thirds would now host at least some of their technology for the security and deployment of their apps in the cloud. At the same time, they would have to cope with the complexity that arises from the combination of SaaS and edge solutions, on-premises and multi-cloud environments and modern applications. SaaS-based security was named as the most important strategic focus in the next two to five years.

Growth at the edge

No less than 76 percent of those surveyed, according to F5, use or plan edge implementations. The main reasons are to improve application performance and collect data for analysis. In addition, 39 percent are of the opinion that edge computing will be strategically important in the coming years. 15 percent would already host technology for app security and delivery at the edge.

Here too, Covid-19 is an accelerator, due to the distribution of workers. More than a third of companies (42%) will support a fully remote workforce in the foreseeable future. Only 15 percent planned to bring all employees back to the office.

Sufficient data, but poor analysis

More than half of the respondents already have tools that assess the current state of applications, but an alarming 95 percent said they are missing important insights from the existing monitoring and analysis solutions.

Accordingly, the collected data was primarily used for troubleshooting, followed by the early detection of performance problems. For almost two thirds of those surveyed (62%), performance is measured in the form of response times, for less than a quarter of companies it is used to detect deterioration in performance, and for only twelve percent the data is passed on to business units.

According to the report, more than 80 percent of respondents believe that data and telemetry are “very important” to their security. Over half are looking forward to the positive effects of AI. The participants also named platforms that combine big data and machine learning (also known as AIOps) as the second most important strategic trend in the next two to five years.


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Covid19 accelerates digital transformation


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