In a further indication of the growing clout of cloud computing, a new study among chief financial officers shows a real fear that their companies will not be able to compete in the marketplace if they don’t make the transition, and soon.

Research carried out by French IT services firm Atos reveals that three quarters of CFOs questioned were concerned that their firms would be negatively impacted – as in losing out on revenue-generating opportunities – if they didn’t have top-level cloud-computing services.

For those that do move to the cloud, CFOs project their companies will gain an additional €123 million in the coming year as they take advantage of a wide range of services and scale back their own costs, according to the study.

So why haven’t these companies made the switch to cloud computing, and are instead relying on their own IT systems? For some, there may be a degree of uncertainty, as they adopt a wait-and-see stance in case cloud computing turns out to be something of a fad, and if they did transition and it all fell apart, they’d then have to set up their in-house network all over again. The multibillion-dollar business of cloud computing is proving to be anything but a short-lived trend, however.

The advantages of operating in the cloud – essentially vast banks of servers at data centres, up to 1 million each at the big players – include: ease of use as programs and applications can be accessed from anywhere in the world, as long as you have an internet connection; drastic cost reductions, because there’s no need to have IT staff to run an in-house network; high levels of security and uptimes; and constantly updated software and hardware. This all helps to make firms more efficient, and it’s why those that are not in the cloud are so concerned.

For companies looking to make the transition from in-house networks to cloud computing, it’s never been easier nor more affordable to do so. Firms in Singapore and right across South-East Asia can benefit from huge leaps in information technology from market-leading clouds such as Amazon Web Services.

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