New technologies traditionally earn their stripes within enterprises before filtering down to mid-tier and SMB markets. But several roundtable attendees believed cloud computing would get the thumbs up in smaller organisations first.
“The hype is that cloud computing is something really big, so you think it’s for enterprise. But I think when it comes down to adoption, where you’ll see it adopted today will be SMB and the mid-size market,” Technical Architecture Solutions’ Tony Wilkinson said. “I’m an SMB and I use cloud in the software-as-a-service space. At the enterprise level, it will take longer to adopt.”
EMC’s Darren McCullum pointed out smaller organisations were less likely to be able to manage complex IT in-house. In these situations, he saw on-demand IT as an ideal way forward.
“Enterprise has a greater depth of resource and greater economies of scale, so upfront, cloud may not be as attractive. SMB and mid-tier don’t have those depths to deliver IT, so they don’t want to be necessarily focused on that, they want to focus on their business outcomes,” he said.
ComputerCorp’s Tony Heywood agreed cloud computing was a way for SMB and mid-market businesses to access IT and run their businesses by partnering with a specialist outsourcer.
“A customer doesn’t care what’s behind that, they want an SLA and performance output,” he argued.
But Cisco’s Dylan Morison pointed out larger players such as Dimension Data and Cisco were already using Salesforce.com because it was a far more efficient way to access CRM systems and services.
“Loads of companies use that because they recognise what’s core and context and invest in that. You don’t want to worry about things that aren’t so core to your business. And they’re big organisations that use those [services],” he said.