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Seventy-three per cent of SMBs in the EMEA region expect to use cloud services in the first half of 2013, according to a new study by Spiceworks.
The organisation’s biannual State of SMB IT survey features feedback from 1,356 respondents from across the globe, and 23 per cent of them are EMEA-based.
The use of cloud services in the region was up 35 per cent on last year, with data backup and recovery proving to be the most popular cloud-based services.
Spiceworks also noted server virtualisation within EMEA has become “a pervasive technology within SMB IT departments,” with nearly 60 per cent already having deployed it. Results indicate adoption of server virtualisation is expected to accelerate by 14 per cent next year.
Desktop virtualisation was also found to be increasingly popular with SMBs. Twenty-three per cent of companies have already implemented desktop virtualisation and a further 16 per cent plan to adopt it in the first half of 2013.
Over 50 per cent of SMBs have also embraced BYOD to a greater or lesser extent and support employee-owned computers, tablets or smartphones in their network. Spiceworks also noted that companies with fewer than 20 employees are most likely to fully embrace the trend, with close to 75 per cent indicating an ongoing initiative.
While the IT community has repeatedly expressed concern that cloud will put them out of a job, the majority of departmental decision makers surveyed said they plan to keep staffing levels steady. This finding backs up recent claims by storage giant EMC that cloud posed little threat to existing jobs.
However, the Spiceworks report showed a decline in the number of anticipated new hires, falling from 28 per cent to 20 per cent in the last six months.
Jay Hallberg, co-founder and vice president of marketing for Spiceworks, said: “The world’s SMBs continue to increase their investment in new technologies, including tablet devices, smartphones, cloud services and virtualization. The results of our research bode well for the industry as new technologies become more pervasive and prompt IT departments to make additional investments.”