SMB not confident in current state of IT, still hesitant to move to cloud

July 13, 2012

Most IT administrators for small businesses are not confident in their current network and data protection situation, according to the a study from a software company. Despite this, most are hesitant to move their IT applications into a cloud computing environment.

Twinges of doubt marked nearly three out of every five administrators surveyed when it came to overall network security and reliability, as 59 percent said they would not bet on the fact that their network was running at peak efficiency. Even with concerns about the current state of their infrastructure, many were hesitant to move full bore into the world of the cloud.

Limited adoption
Less than half of all respondents had deployed cloud-based services for more than 25 percent of their company's applications. Twenty eight percent claimed that they had moved some, but were under that one-quarter threshold, while another 28 percent had not moved any IT applications or services into the cloud.

Various concerns stood in the way of increased adoption. However, cloud security stepped down from the top spot it had held in many previous studies into cloud-migration barriers. Just 24 percent labeled it as the No. 1 concern, leaving it to stand tied for third among the greatest obstacles to overcome for small businesses.

Thirty one percent of respondents said fears over a lack of in-house knowledge. Although this can sometimes be mitigated by outsourcing cloud services, concerns over third-party control of company products was second at 28 percent. Tied for third with cloud security was the expense to implement cloud computing solutions.

Vendor trust
Even as trust in third-party vendors seemed to be low, a study from small and medium-sized business (SMB) analyst firm Techaisle indicated that increasing trust may prove to be the avenue to more widespread adoption among companies. In the study, 69 percent of SMB respondents indicated that they would feel more comfortable with the migration if they were to receive all of their solutions and applications from a single vendor.

Building trust with one individual vendor can help reduce the concerns cited in the software company's study. Using one company will likely make it easier for SMBs to cope with some loss of control, while also making the company more comfortable with the technology.

-McAfee Cloud Security