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Middle Market Executives Face Unforeseen Hurdles in Moving Forward with the Cloud
Lack of Funding, Fear of Unexpected Costs and Security Top Concerns Around Cloud Adoption
82% of Middle Market Executives Utilize Public or Private Clouds
80% of Public Cloud Users Concerned With Security
75% Say Will Take More Than a Year Before Seeing Payback from Cloud
67% Say Spending on IT Infrastructure Increased Because of Transition to or Buildup of a Private Cloud
49% of Public Cloud Users Concerned About Vendor Pricing and Unforeseen Costs
Wednesday, September 18, 2013 08:30 AM
Due to a lack of awareness in hidden costs, utilization of traditional financing products and implementation of processes meant for older IT infrastructure, middle market executives are realizing less value in their cloud system transitions

NEW YORK--(BUSINESS WIRE)--While middle market executives report moving full steam ahead with transitions to cloud-based systems, many organizations face unexpected hurdles that prevent the Cloud from fully delivering on its promises. Cloud-based systems and services, which are largely being built upon existing IT infrastructure using traditional financing products, are resulting in duplicated services and lower return on investment. These are just some of the key findings of “Clearing the Roadblocks to Cloud Computing” (, a new study of middle market executives released today by CIT Group Inc. (NYSE:CIT), a leader in developing business solutions for small businesses and middle market companies for the acquisition of equipment and value-added services. The study was conducted by Forbes Insights on behalf of CIT.

“Due to a lack of awareness in hidden costs, utilization of traditional financing products and implementation of processes meant for older IT infrastructure, middle market executives are realizing less value in their cloud system transitions,” said Ron Arrington, Global President, CIT Vendor Finance. “However, with careful planning that minimizes surprises and new products and services from financing providers, full transitions to cloud computing should continue to take place with costs likely falling significantly.”


  • Companies Are Moving Ahead With Various Forms of The Cloud: Nearly half of middle market executives (46%) say they currently use — and 26% are considering the use of — public cloud services. Thirty-six percent utilize — and 26% are considering the use of — private clouds. Fifteen percent say they already use — and 25% are considering the use of — hybrid clouds. More than 7 out of 10 (76%) companies using public clouds say they have been subscribing to these services for less than two years. Sixty-seven percent of companies with private clouds say they are less than two years old.
  • Lack of Funding, Fear of Unexpected Costs and Security Top Concerns Around Cloud Adoption: When asked about issues that concern them, 49% of public cloud users point to vendor pricing and unforeseen costs. Fifty-one percent of private cloud users worry about the costs of maintaining or adding to existing systems, and 44% say their projects are being hampered by unforeseen costs. Another 43% of executives overseeing private clouds say it’s difficult to get the funding they need to modify their data centers for virtualized, private cloud settings. Other challenges to adoption include: security, cited by 80% of public cloud users and 41% of hybrid cloud users; data ownership and accountability, a concern among 57% of public cloud users; and performance issues, cited by 54% of private cloud users and 46% of executives at hybrid cloud sites.
  • Transitioning To The Public Cloud: More than three-quarters (77%) of executives using public cloud are replacing at least some of their existing IT assets or applications. Public cloud services being adopted include 74% subscribing to Software as a Service (SaaS), 34% using Platform as a Service (PaaS) and 24% using Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS). From public clouds, 64% seek lower operational costs, 43% expect more availability of applications and systems and 41% hope for better overall performance.
  • Going Forward With Private Clouds: More than two-thirds of private cloud users (68%) say they have built their projects by virtualizing or extending their current data centers. Nearly a quarter (24%) say their private clouds are entirely new systems. A majority of executives using private cloud, 73%, say they do so to gain greater data security and privacy, while 65% say they want more control over application features, and 49% look for greater control over long-term costs. Among hybrid cloud users, 52% also seek lower operational costs and 49% want improved performance.
  • Private Cloud Computing Has Cost More Than Many Companies Have Expected: Close to 7 out of 10 middle market executives (67%) using private clouds say that spending on IT infrastructure increased because of transition to or buildup of a private cloud. Only 8% have seen a decrease in their IT costs as a result of the move to private clouds. Thirty-five percent of private cloud users say these services have been more costly than expected. Three-quarters of all surveyed executives say it will take more than a year until they start seeking a payback from their cloud implementations.
  • Most Private Cloud Funding Comes from The IT Budget: Seventy-seven percent of private cloud users say funding comes out of their IT department budget; only 8% have a chargeback mechanism by which departmental usage can be metered. Most companies have not altered their financing and accounting approaches for the cloud phenomenon. More than half (52%) of surveyed executives say they fund cloud services and systems with the same financing and accounting mechanisms as they use for standard IT systems.

Complimentary copies of the report can be downloaded at


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About the Study

The study, conducted in partnership between Forbes Insights and CIT Group Inc., included insight into the views and strategic plans of middle market ($25 million - $1 billion in annual sales) executives. The sample comprises responses from more than 250 senior middle market executives to gauge their views on cloud computing services.

About Forbes Insights

Forbes Insights is the strategic research and Thought Leadership practice of Forbes Media, publisher of Forbesmagazine and, whose combined media properties reach nearly 50 million business decision makers worldwide on a monthly basis. Taking advantage of a proprietary database of senior-level executives in the Forbescommunity, Forbes Insights conducts research on a host of topics of interest to C-level executives, senior marketing professionals, small business owners and those who aspire to positions of leadership, as well as providing deep insights into issues and trends surrounding wealth creation and wealth management.

About CIT

Founded in 1908, CIT (NYSE:CIT) is a bank holding company with more than $35 billion in financing and leasing assets. It provides financing and leasing capital and advisory services to its clients and their customers across more than 30 industries. CIT maintains leadership positions in small business and middle market lendingfactoringretail finance,aerospaceequipment and rail leasing, and vendor finance. CIT operates CIT Bank (Member FDIC), its primary bank subsidiary, which, through its online bank, offers a suite of savings options designed to help customers achieve a range of financial goals.



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