Mar25

The Cloud and Small Businesses

question markThe cloud is a fantastic resource which could help a company of any size make their business more efficient and secure. However, new research by Brother International reveals that smaller businesses are increasingly the ones who feel left in the dark by the concept of the cloud.

The survey, names the ‘Brother Small-Business Survey’, surveyed 500 owners of U.S. small businesses (those with fewer than 100 employees). Just 28% of respondents to the survey said that they fully understood the concept of cloud computing, and 42% admitted that their business did not employ the cloud in any fashion. In fact, a significant 35% said they were only using it for cloud storage, meaning that many small businesses are not using the cloud to its full potential, on platforms such as cloud hosting.

The survey is particularly poignant, as a massive 75% of respondents said they felt a crashed server would impede their business more than an employee being off work, and so this highlights that cloud computing certainly has a place in the world of small businesses. Making sure that small businesses know the clear benefits of the cloud will decrease concerns in areas such as these.

Moreover, 66% of respondents said they were overwhelmed in general by the amount of technology on offer to them, suggesting that things needs to be done in terms of simplification of what is available to them. However, it wasn’t all doom and gloom, as those who declared that their stress was at the highest level ever was down by half on last year’s results.

The survey highlights some clear areas for cloud providers to work on. Cloud packages should be easier and more clearly presented, so that businesses understand the benefits of implementing the cloud in multiple areas of business.

Also, more information could be made available on the cloud in general, to ensure that business owners are able to make an informed choice about whether cloud computing is something that they could use to grow their business and make it more efficient. Small business owners may feel overwhelmed by the idea of the cloud, or may feel that it is something only larger businesses use, and this is something that needs addressing within the cloud community.

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