Cloud software levels playing field with bigger businesses, says study.
A Microsoft-commissioned study has found that the number of very small businesses (two-10 employees) using one paid cloud service would triple within the next three years.
The study, carried out by Edge Strategies, surveyed 3,000 small and medium-sized businesses in 13 countries including Australia. Businesses using cloud services saw twice as many benefits in productivity compared to those who weren’t using the cloud (59 percent to 30 percent).
Other findings included that businesses using the cloud wanted to do more with mobile devices than just email (see graphic below). They expected to use productivity and business applications on their mobiles as well.
Only 20 percent of SMBs believed that their data was less secure in the cloud than on their own servers. Nearly half of larger SMBs surveyed thought their data was as secure in the cloud as their own on-premise systems.
Most SMBs wanted to buy services from a provider with a local presence. A third felt local support was critical.
Over two-thirds of respondents would run their email systems in the cloud within the next two to three years. Half of the businesses would use the cloud for communications, backup and databases in that time.