Microsoft: Italian SMEs ready to adopt more digital tools

According to a recent study by Microsoft and research leader Ipsos Mori, Italy’s Small and Medium Enterprises are eager to adopt new technologies for various reasons.

The research suggests more and more Italians see technology as a tool to optimize both their work efficiency and work-life balance. 66% of Italy’s SMEs has renewed or is renewing its IT processes, whilst 68% of employees rely on of Cloud Computing and Mobility for their work. 62% say that mobile technology helps optimize time and improve productivity.


Employees of Italian SMEs clearly recognize the importance of new connected technology: 43% believe use of technology should be a priority in helping reduce costs, and there is also a widespread belief (42% of study participants) that technology can help business grow. 33% of employees already work for ‘paperless’ companies.


The study also indicates Mobility and Cloud are seen as important aspects for supporting businesses on the path to growth. Market data confirms Italy’s growing interest in Cloud: the number of new Microsoft SME customers grew 200% between July and September last year, compared to the same period a year before.  


Bring your own device

An interesting fact emerging from the comparison with other European countries is the fact that Italians use personal devices more than any other nationality. Though only a quarter has a PC at home, 40% use a personal smartphone, 30% a personal laptop and 17% a personal tablet for work purposes. For employees who regularly work away from the office, these figures are significantly higher: respectively 51%, 45% and 21%.


The 2015 Microsoft-Ipsos Mori Research into SME employees and technology involved a total of 5,500 SME employees across more than 15 European countries. Looking at the figures from the full study, more than half of the employees credited mobile technology with saving time, boosting productivity, and improving work-life balance.


Employees indicated the flexibility provided by new ways of working is driving greater innovation: nearly twice as many say they have their best ideas at home, rather than in the office.


Of course, having ubiquitous high-speed broadband in urban regions and beyond is essential to the uptake and success of the technologies SMEs are so eager to obtain. It’s no surprise that forward looking decisions, such as Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi’s recent announcement of a state plan to ‘fibre up’ 7,300 Italian Municipalities by 2018 to the tune of €4 billion, are welcomed with enthusiasm.