A new cloud assessment report reveals some encouraging statistics for managed service providers (MSPs). The 2012 IT in the Cloud Assessment Project, coordinated by video platform provider Qumu, revealed that 44.4 percent of 700 IT professionals surveyed plan to move their applications to the cloud within the next 12 months.
The survey, conducted by independent online panel and survey technology company Toluna, showed that as many as 33.4 percent of those surveyed will move up to half their applications to the cloud within that timeframe. A noteworthy item for MSPs was that 54.5 percent of respondents were aware of the benefits of moving to cloud-based applications, which will certainly make selling services much easier for providers.
The top benefit of the cloud, according to 30 percent of those surveyed, was better security. This was followed by cost savings after deployment, better mobility support, and time saved from not having to update infrastructure. Quick deployment was named a benefit by 18.5 percent of respondents, followed by environmental benefits, the elasticity required to scale services up or down as needed and the benefits of outsourced system support and maintenance.
Perhaps an even greater testament to the relevance of the cloud and managed services was the fact that 44.9 percent of those surveyed are already running some applications in the cloud. These include e-mail, storage, document management, project management, CRM, marketing automation, video communication and employee portals. Video communications are gaining in prominence, with 55 percent of respondents citing the benefits of secure services for enterprise video sharing.
The biggest benefits of collaborative video services, according to participants in the project, include increased access to training videos as well as the opportunity to let employees share ideas. Other benefits include increased access to subject matter experts' knowledge, better employee collaboration, and improved organization and search of an organization's video assets.
Large enterprises surveyed were found to be more favorable to cloud-based solutions than SMBs, but not by much. Of those currently running applications in the cloud, 51 percent were large companies and 42.4 percent were SMBs. Of those who recognized the benefits of migrating their applications to the cloud, 59.5 percent were large companies versus 52.2 percent of SMBs. Large enterprises were more open to the benefits of using a secure enterprise video-sharing service, with 63.3 percent recognizing the advantages versus 47.3 percent of SMBs.
“The results showing that large enterprises are more inclined to cloud applications are somewhat surprising," said Ray Hood, senior vice president and general manager of Qumu, a Rimage company. "Some may expect large companies to be concerned with cloud security. We believe that larger companies have more history with IT outsourcing and see the cloud as the logical next step.”
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