A recently released report by Oxford Economics shows that many small and midsize businesses are eagerly adopting cloud technology and have linked it to increased revenue.

The Path to Value cloud survey, which included feedback from 350 business executives across the U.S., found a "strong correlation between those furthest along in adopting cloud computing and bottom line results," Ed Cone, organizer of the report, told InformationWeek. Almost two thirds of respondents believed their cloud service provider was responsible for adding measurable value to their business results.

Larger companies tended to give more favorable ratings of their cloud use, the survey found. Of companies with revenues between $100 and $499 million, 46 percent said that utilizing cloud based services added business value while 84 percent of enterprises with revenues between $750 million and $5 billion responded the same.

According to the report, a major driver toward cloud adoption is the ability for businesses to increase speed of operation and time to production, and achieving these things was a top measure of success for respondents. Seventy-one percent of participants reported faster time to production after implementing a cloud infrastructure.

Businesses see many benefits with cloud adoption
Being able to create new lines of business and expand into new geographic markets were also key results the cloud enabled businesses to experience. Forty percent of respondents said their company had moved into a new geographic area after employing cloud services, and 55 percent said they believe the cloud was essential to the long-term business vision. When asked if the cloud was critical to their company's innovation strategy, 36 percent of respondents said it was important currently, while 53 percent responded that it would be critical in two years.

Of the major areas in which businesses expected to see benefits, 63 percent projected improvement in collaboration among companies and 59 percent believed there would be increased collaboration between partners. Other areas where companies expected improvement include time to market, innovation and improved customer service. Expectation of benefits in all of these areas are projected to increase by at least 20 percent in the next two years.

While businesses had many planned uses for cloud services, more than half of respondents employed cloud computing for data warehousing and 49 percent utilized the cloud for disaster recovery and business continuity. Other common uses include project management, supply chain and order fulfillment. Cloud use in all of these areas is expected to increase by at least 31 percent in the next two years.