Smaller, rural businesses failing to embrace cloud

Mark Kellet, CEO, Magnet.



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8 April 2015 | 0

Smaller businesses outside Dublin are less likely to have embraced cloud technologies, deployed IP-based telephone systems or availed of government grants to go online, according to research by Amarach Research. This failure is putting them at a competitive disadvantage, according to Magnet, the telecoms provider that commissioned the research.

Surveying more than 600 smaller to medium enterprises (SME) outside of the capital, less than a fifth have implemented a cloud solution for their business, compared to almost half (45%) in Dublin.

The figures are worse still for IP telephony, as 90% of the SMEs surveyed still used plain-old telephone systems (POTS), which according to Amarach, could be costing these organisations up to €266 million per year, as well as losing out on the advantages of IP or cloud hosted telephony systems, such as mobile integration, follow-me profiles and presence technologies.

The research also showed that while 43% of smaller firms in Dublin had access to company data via smart phones, the figure was just 14% among the organisations outside of the capital, despite the fact that a fifth of workers (20%) were regularly on the road.

The reason for this lack of engagement was less clear, but the research found that few of the surveyed organisations had taken advantage of government grants that enabled smaller businesses to go online to provide ecommerce and other services. According to Amarach, only 3% of the eligible organisations had accessed the technology and business grants, such as the Enterprise Ireland voucher, or the Government’s Online Trading Voucher which subsidises 50% of the cost of going online up to a maximum of €2,500 for firms of up to 10 people and €2 million turnover.

“Our research shows that 90% of SMEs are unaware of or misunderstand the Online Trading Voucher Scheme as a support to engaging in ecommerce, “ said Mark Kellett, CEO, Magnet. “We are encouraging more firms to take advantage of it and improve their competitiveness in the process.”



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