SMEs Put Their Faith in Traditional IT

By Michael Vizard  |  Posted 2013-10-29 Email Print this article Print

Despite all the hype about cloud computing, most small and midsize enterprises remain committed to on-premise systems that are tied to strategic business initiatives, according to a new survey of 100 executives involved in strategic business decisions at U.S. SMEs. That doesn't mean there isn't interest in cloud infrastructure; it just means that the impediments to its adoption are still quite significant with SMEs. Topping that list of obstacles is security, which represents both an opportunity and a challenge for channel companies to provide offerings to address SMEs' concerns. The study, conducted by IDC on behalf of Progress Software, finds that more than half the survey respondents tied investments in IT to gaining a competitive business advantage. Ultimately, that means many of them have faith that investing in IT will pay off for their businesses. Of course, limited IT budgets remain a challenge, which means solution providers in the channel will need to show customers how they can save money in one area in order to free up the funds they need to invest in more strategic IT initiatives that can significantly transform the business for the better hopefully sooner than later. Channel Insider examines key takeaways from the study.

  • Top Business Outcome Goals

    Cost control is still important, but driving new revenue is also critical. 87%: cost control/containment, 84%: improving customer experience through value-added services, 76%: retaining and expanding customer base, 71%: meeting compliance and government requirements, 57%: business agility and faster time to market, 57%: expansion into new markets
    1-Top Business Outcome Goals
  • Top Challenges to Achieving Business Growth

    Fundamental IT issues are still a major challenge. 60%: security concerns, 59%: infrastructure and data complexity, 43%: mobile strategy challenges, 42%: skills shortage, 42%: time-to-market challenges, 42%: regulatory/governance pressure
    2-Top Challenges to Achieving Business Growth
  • IT Investments Planned in Next 18 Months

    For all the cloud hype, on-premise infrastructure still leads. 54%: on-premise infrastructure, 51%: reallocation of resources, 48%: training and hiring, 47%: increase vendor partnerships, 43%: regulatory and governance solutions, 36%: investment in cloud infrastructure
    3-IT Investments Planned in Next 18 Months
  • Strategic IT Investment Impact

    More than half see IT pushing them ahead of competitors. 42%: move somewhat ahead of competitors, 27%: keep you on par with competitors, 23%: move significantly ahead of competitors, 4%: catch up with competitors, 4%: not sure
    4-Strategic IT Investment Impact
  • Level of Strategic Business Importance in Next 18 Months

    Interest is high in new apps and services that transform the business. 62%: rollout of new IT services/delivery models, 60%: adjusting business models to meet customer demand, 59%: deployment of new apps to increase productivity, 50%: development of strategic partnerships , 43%: implementation/expansion of mobile strategy, 42%: migration to cloud-based infrastructure
    5-Level of Strategic Business Importance in Next 18 Months
  • Level of Importance for Application Initiative in Next 18 Months

    It's hard to say one thing is absolutely more important than another. 59%: ensuring security and compliance, 52%: increasing collaboration between IT and the business, 50%: optimizing apps for mobile environments, 49%: leveraging business expertise to drive growth, 48%: big data initiatives, 44%: rapidly developing new apps, 29%: enabling business users to design and build apps
    6-Level of Importance for Application Initiative in Next 18 Months
  • Top Issues Affecting Goal Achievement

    Budget constraints and complexity are the top challenges. 49%: limited budget to develop apps, 47%: data complexity, 45%: skills to manage and leverage apps, 45%: integration issues, 40%: device complexity, 32%: inability to customize apps, 29%: time to market
    7-Top Issues Affecting Goal Achievement
  • Obstacles to Implementing Cloud Infrastructure

    Security remains the top perceived concern. 41%: security, 35%: limited budget, 31%: ROI concerns, 29%: unclear business benefit, 26%: regulatory/governance concerns, 19%: none, 5%: other
    8-Obstacles to Implementing Cloud Infrastructure
Mike Vizard has been covering IT issues in the enterprise for 25 years as an editor and columnist for publications such as InfoWorld, eWeek, Baseline, CRN, ComputerWorld and Digital Review.

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