two-thirds of UK CIOs and CFOs not sold on cloud

In a poll of UK enterprise chief information officers and chief financial officers, 67 percent said they are either not planning to adopt cloud computing (35 percent) or are unsure (32 percent) in the next two years, however, demand for hosted software and services remains strong among UK enterprises.

UK business decision makers placed cloud computing at the bottom of their top ten strategic investment priorities for the next 12 months, according to "Cloud or Fog?," a new report from managed hosting provider NTT Europe Online (, which polled 200 CIOs and CFOs at large UK businesses.

Despite 85 percent of CIOs and CFOs looking for more flexibility in their software licensing agreements and 68 percent said they will avoid long term IT contracts, it seems that execs lack a thorough understanding of the opportunities presented by the cloud computing concept, which - in itself - caused 46 percent of respondents to feel confused. Three of of five respondents, however, did note that their organisation was more likely to invest in software and services delivered online as a result of the recession.

"Decision makers at large UK companies clearly see the benefits of investing in online delivery of software and services however many are unconvinced about taking the plunge with a cloud computing model in the next two years," NTT Europe Online marketing director Rob Steggles said in a statement. "Unfortunately cloud has become a technical sell rather than a business and operational discussion, which is where the value really lies."

Steggles notes that the classic, shared cloud computing model is not as popular with company execs as private clouds, or securely hosted online software and services.

Only 23 percent of respondents said their organisation was using cloud computing, and those that did not cited security, concept immaturity and uncertain reliability as their primary reasons for not adopting it. The decision to move to the cloud also is highly influenced by its return on investment, with the largest segment of CIOs and CFOs (40 percent) demanding between 10 and 20 percent of cost savings to justify the investment.

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