40% of executives not planning to adopt the cloud

Forty percent of C-level executives have stated that they are not planning to adopt cloud computing, according to a report by ISACA. Respondents who do not plan to use cloud computing at all in the near future list security (47%) and privacy concerns (50%), followed closely by legacy infrastructure investments (35%), as barriers to adoption.

The 2011 study polled 834 executives from 21 countries, divided almost evenly between business executives (CEOs, CFOs and COOs) and IT executives (CIOs and heads of IT).

Of the executives who use or plan to use cloud computing for IT services 60 percent was non-mission critical and 40 percent would also trust the cloud for mission-critical IT services. Organizations are also actively employing outsourcing, with 93 percent fully or partially outsourcing some of their IT activities.

Key findings include:

Value creation of IT investments is one of the most important dimensions of IT’s contribution to the business (mentioned by more than nine out of 10 respondents). But challenges exist: increasing IT costs and an insufficient number of IT staff are the most common IT-related issues experienced by respondents in the past 12 months.

There is a correlation between the position of the head of IT in the enterprise’s hierarchy and the pro-active nature of the IT department. Overall, 70 percent of respondents noted that the head of IT is a member of the senior management team, but this figure increases to 80 percent for those enterprises where IT has a proactive role.

Governance of enterprise IT (GEIT) is a priority with most enterprises—only five percent indicated that they do not consider it important. Two-thirds of respondent enterprises have some GEIT activities in place, the most common being the use of IT policies and standards, followed by the employment of defined and managed IT processes. The main driver for activities related to GEIT is ensuring that IT functionality aligns with business needs, and the most commonly experienced outcomes are improvements in management of IT-related risk and communication and relationships between business and IT.

Outsourcing is highly prevalent across the board, but especially in larger enterprises and those where IT is considered important or very important to the delivery of the business strategy or vision.

Sixty percent of respondents use or are planning to use cloud computing for non-mission-critical IT services, and more than 40 percent use or are planning to use it for mission-critical IT services. For companies that do not have plans to use cloud computing the main reasons are data privacy and security concerns.

The global economic downturn has had an effect on IT activities, the primary response initiatives being: (1) a reduction in contractor staff, (2) a reduction in permanent staff and (3) a consolidation of the infrastructure.

The use of Facebook or Twitter at work is not highly prized; only one out of five respondents believes that the benefits of employees using social networking outweigh the risks.

The complete study is available here.

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