Cloud computing: 9 in 10 are positive on it, survey says

Cloud computing is taking off, but IT professionals are still on the fence about it when it comes down to the details. A new Rackspace survey has the goods.
Written by Andrew Nusca, Contributor


Another day, another cloud computing survey that shows how keen business technology executives are on cloud computing. (Until they get a closer look, that is.)

A new national poll from San Antonio, Texas-based enterprise hosting company Rackspace shows that 91 percent of "IT decision-makers" see cloud computing as a positive thing.

But the devil's in the details. Quick stats:

  • Seventy-five percent of the group said they valued strong customer service and technical support over higher hosting prices. Twenty-five percent said the opposite. Interestingly, that ratio didn't change relative to the size of the organization.
  • Top concerns: The ability to add computing power; the ability to move data easily between cloud providers; the pitfalls of vendor lock-in.
  • Forty-three percent said they are aware of people in their organization using cloud computing services not provided by the IT department for work.
  • Thirty-eight percent said saving time was the main driver for this behavior.
  • Just one in three acknowledged that it was because the IT department didn't offer comparable services or employees simply didn't want to deal with the IT department.
  • Finally, 48 percent of the polled IT pros said yes, they would take a job with a new company that does not use cloud computing. (Twenty-eight percent said no way; 24 percent were undecided.) It's unclear whether this shows IT pros who seek a challenge, or who simply fail to see value in the cloud.

Nothing groundbreaking in these statistics for seasoned IT professionals, but it's interesting to see how on-the-fence everyone is about the technology.

"The world is in the midst of a tectonic shift toward cloud computing that is revolutionizing the way companies do business," Rackspace CEO Lanham Napier said in a statement. That may be true, but it's pretty clear that the shift is neither linear nor particularly brimming with confidence -- the reasons are many and not necessarily aligned with the greater business strategy. In other words, it's no silver bullet.

McLaughlin & Associates conducted the survey, which involved 500 IT pros who work for businesses or organizations that use cloud computing.

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