But security and reliability still an issue
New research has revealed that just over half of UK SMEs expect to be using cloud computing by the end of the year.
The study, conducted by business ISP Easynet Connect, found that just over 50% of the respondents said that they planned to embrace cloud computing this year, up from 22% who responded in the same way when asked in October 2008. Long term on-demand computing is also set to increase, with 73% claiming they will adopt cloud computing within five years, up from 47% at the end of 2008.
The number of SMEs that have ruled out cloud computing has dropped from 53% in 2008 to 27% in 2009.
It is larger SMEs (with 50+ employees) that are the most enthusiastic when it comes to cloud adoption, with 66% already using the cloud or planning to do so within 12 months.
Small businesses are also seeing the benefits of cloud computing. In 2008 35% believed that using the cloud would save them money and would enable employees to work from home, boosting productivity. Those figures have increased to 51% and 43% respectively in 2009.
“Cloud computing has been on the business radar for some time and our report proves that we are at the tipping point for mass adoption amongst small and medium sized businesses,” said Chris Stening, managing director, Easynet Connect.
The usual issues of security and reliability are listed as potential stumbling blocks to cloud adoption, although figures were slightly down on other similar surveys. Just under one in ten (9%) of respondents said that cloud computing wasn’t reliable enough and 13% said that it wasn’t secure enough.
The research was conducted in December 2009 and quizzed 255 IT decision makers at UK SMEs.