Brother Survey Indicates Small Businesses Open to Cloud, Mobile Technologies – But Still Printing

The seventh annual Brother International survey, the 2016 Brother Business Survey, indicates that small-business owners are open to adopting next‐generation solutions in their organization (such as cloud‐based and mobile technology), but are also holding on to “office basics” such as printing

For example, 58 percent of small businesses’ daily work tasks still require a physical office presence, and 91 percent of small-business owners currently have a printer, scanner, copier, or fax machine in their work space.

Brother says that the need for these devices is confirmed in the data, which shows that 43 percent of this same group use a printer, on average, 10+ times per day.

According to the firm, 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 percent 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 percent of respondents said they would spend most of their IT budget on mobile devices for remote
  • Security remains import; 30 percent of business owners plan to spend the largest portion of their IT budget on network and data security technology.

“This year’s Brother Business Survey findings show small business owners still trust and rely on tried‐and‐true core business practices,” said John Wandishin, vice president of Marketing, Business Machines Group at Brother International. “Clearly these technology‐minded entrepreneurs are pursuing and implementing the best available solutions to grow and succeed. As a result, they are investing in reliability, as well as cost‐effectiveness and quality, which demonstrates sound thinking and can make all the difference in their business success.”

The Brother Business Survey was conducted by Wakefield Research ( among 509 U.S. small business owners and business decision‐makers at companies with 500 or fewer employees between December 10 – 18, 2015, using an email invitation and an online survey.

Brother notes that the results of any sample are subject to sampling variation. For the interviews conducted in this particular study, the chances are 95 in 100 that a survey result does not vary, plus or minus, by more than 4.3 percentage points from the result that would be obtained if interviews had been conducted with all persons in the universe represented by the sample.

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