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How employees use cloud services and mobile devices on their personal time is having a major impact on their companies' decisions to adopt cloud computing in the U.S., according to CDW's 2013 State of the Cloud Report.
In a survey of 1,242 of IT professionals, 73 percent of respondents said that personal cloud and mobile use by employees has "significantly influenced" cloud uptake by their organizations. It helps that employees are being more vocal about the matter.
Sixty-eight percent of those polled said their employee have been increasingly requesting cloud services over the past two years, says CDW.
But keeping employees happy is only part of the story. Switching to the cloud is helping businesses keep their budgets in line. "Estimates of current-year savings from cloud adoption increased from 10 percent of current IT budgets in 2011 to 13 percent in 2012," said CDW in a statement.
Trends like the consumerization of IT and the bring your own device (BYOD) movement are not only making iPads and Android tablets a familiar sight in business settings, they're transforming how businesses approach IT, according to Stephen Braat, general manager of cloud solutions at CDW.
"By aligning cloud services with critical applications and preferences of employees that use mobile devices, organizations can better capture business value that includes cost savings, increased efficiency, improved employee mobility, and an increased ability to create innovative new products and services," said Braat in a statement.
If a company's executives and IT managers like a cloud service, there's a good chance that their fellow employees will soon be using it, too. Two-thirds of respondents said that the cloud services they use outside of their work lives "directly influences their cloud-related recommendations at work," said CDW.
Overall, cloud computing has established a firm foothold among businesses and adoption rates continue to grow at a brisk rate. Thirty-nine percent of organizations are currently employing cloud computing solutions. In 2011, 28 percent said that they entrusted the cloud from some of their IT needs.
Apart from security, IT managers are taking other factors into account while weighing their choices. Cloud service performance emerged as an important consideration for 32 percent of those surveyed, while 25 percent were mindful of integration issues.
Regardless, nothing seems to stop the cloud's momentum. "Although the continued migration to cloud computing has presented new challenges, the benefits continue to outweigh the risks," concluded Braat.