According to a recent report from AVG Technologies, many SMBs in the US and UK are missing out on the benefits of cloud technologies due to basic confusion. The organizations that particpated in the study were unsure of cloud services or felt they were only for large organizations.
The thought that cloud was only for the bigger companies, AVG says, means that the SMB market is missing out on the productivity increases and cost controls that some cloud-based solutions offer. The study found just a quarter of SMBs had adopted some form of cloud services, while a similar proportion (22% in the UK and 17% in the US) thought cloud services were only for large companies.
In addition to the lack of understanding of cloud services, other factors cited were cost (23% UK/21% US), lack of trust (17% UK/18% US), and the belief the services are too complicated (nearly 10% in both the UK and US).
Moreover, One-in-three SMBs (31% in the UK and 28% in the US) said they did not understand cloud services at all. More than three quarters of SMBs in both the US (77.3%) and UK (76.4%) say they are open to technology that makes their life easier, and are, in fact, dependent on large amounts of technology. Significantly, however, a substantial proportion of SMBs in the US (42%) and UK (52%) say they are dealing with IT issues, including security, themselves – and spending up to four hours a week in the process.
“The research highlights the need to educate SMBs about the benefits that the right cloud services could bring to their businesses,” said Gene Marks, a small business owner, author and columnist.
“It is clear that SMBs are juggling the same challenges as their larger counterparts but are making complex technology decisions without the benefit of an IT department or outside expertise to guide them,” Marks added.
For those SMBs who have taken the plunge into cloud services, the most popular usage is sharing/collaboration tools (64%), storage (34%) and iPad/mobile apps (32%).