Today, Wakefield Research released a study (pdf) that found small businesses are embracing technology trends like cloud computing but haven't completely given up on traditional workplace ideas. While the tone of the report implies more firms are hanging onto old technologies, I found the opposite to be true.
The report claims 58% of small business' daily work tasks still require a physical office presence and 91% of small business owners currently have a printer, scanner, copier or fax machine within their workspace. That number is significantly higher than I would have accepted. The fact that almost 40% don't require a physical office presence is a significant shift in thinking over the past decade. I would be interested to know how many small law firms compare to other small businesses in that regard.
The report also states:
This “best of both worlds” approach allows businesses to seek maximum productivity, while driving the business forward. For example, according to the survey:
- Small businesses continue to migrate towards the cloud for scalability and cost savings; 21% of respondents plan to invest the largest portion of their IT budget in cloud‐based file sync and share solutions.
- Many small business owners are accommodating the expanding mobile workforce; 28% of respondents said they would spend most of their IT budget on mobile devices for remote employees.
- Security remains to be of importance; 30% percent of business owners plan to spend the largest portion of their IT budget on network and data security technology.
I certainly see this trend extending as entrepreneurs get more comfortable with this flexible, scalable model.