One third of small and medium businesses across New Zealand have never used cloud computing, according to a new study by business advisory group The Alternative Board.
As a result, The Alternative Board’s New Zealand chief executive, Stephen James, says there is an “urgent need” for Kiwi businesses to learn how cloud based computing systems.
“This study is a real eye opener,” James says. “Respondents using the Cloud say it makes their workforce more productive and better able to service their customers’ needs.
“One third of businesses are missing out on these advantages and it will only be a matter of time before this starts to impact on their bottom lines.
“A lack of knowledge about cloud computing could be holding many SMEs back.”
According to the study, the majority of cloud-using businesses no longer have security fears.
When businesses first moved to the cloud, 80 percent of owners with a high grasp of cloud computing rated their security confidence at a 7 or higher.
Still, a respectable 63 percent of owners with a lower grasp of cloud computing rated their confidence in security a 7 or higher.
Functionality was the greatest concern from respondents migrating to the cloud platform (43 percent).
Businesses were primarily concerned that by using the cloud, important data could be compromised, also by the inability to access data when internet signal is weak and with dependence on a third party to manage their company’s information technology needs.
What was their experience? Are there any after-the-fact findings?
When businesses were asked what their reasons were for moving to cloud computing the top response (22 percent) was because it makes their workforce more mobile and productive followed by quicker/easier access to data (21percent) and to service customers more effectively (11 percent).
James says it was “pleasing” that the principal reasons customers made the switch were positive ones.
“Just 8 percent said they made the switch to save costs,” he adds.
In addition, 81 percent of respondents rated their satisfaction with using cloud based platforms a seven or higher.
The survey was taken by 300 business owners based in New Zealand, UK, Ireland, Canada and the US with 87 percent of respondents being in business for at least eight years.