SMBs Going Virtual in Big Numbers

In a new study by a group of nationwide Cisco partners surveying IT managers, directors and CIOs in small-to-medium sized businesses (SMB), 77 percent of respondents said they already have some sort of virtualization in place. This number is expected to grow as 71 percent of those surveyed expect to increase their budgets by up to 20 percent over the next two years.

The study also found that 95 percent of the respondents who have virtualization in place are seeing an immediate impact on efficiency and cost reduction. Ninety-six percent feel that virtualization allows for a competitive advantage.

Sixty-one percent of respondents ranked improved system scalability as the No. 1 benefit of virtualization.

Larger companies are making virtualization a higher priority 80 percent of firms with 100 to 500 employees have funds in their IT budget dedicated to virtualization, as opposed to only half of firms with under 100 employees with funds dedicated to virtualization, the survey revealed.

Upper and middle management remain divided on the benefits of virtualization. In upper management, 70 percent of respondents believe that virtualization has a significant impact on efficiency and cost-savings as opposed to the 45 percent of middle management who think the same.

Of the firms with no virtualization in place, 61 percent of middle managers named cost as the biggest barrier.

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