A new International Data Corporation (IDC) multi-client study, CloudView 2016, shows that 58% of 6,159 organizations surveyed worldwide in December 2015 and January 2016 are embracing the cloud, using public or private cloud services for more than two small applications or workloads. That’s up from just 24% 14 months ago, the firm says.

The top drivers of cloud adoption are around improving resource utilization and staff productivity, the study shows. Despite the increase in organizations embracing and investing in the cloud, only 5% of respondents think they have an "optimized" cloud strategy.

"Beyond adoption and maturity, a series of questions on 'why are' or 'why aren't' respondents moving more workloads to the cloud makes up a key part of the study," Ben McGrath, senior research analyst, software-as-a-service (SaaS) and business models, at IDC said in a statement.

"Improving staff productivity remains a key driver, but in comparison to previous years' studies, more respondents are identifying business-related metrics as a key driver of cloud adoption, such as improved business agility and more support for business-related programs," McGrath said.

Among the other key findings of the study: Respondents expect to increase their cloud spending by 44% over the next two years; more than 70% of heavy cloud users are thinking in terms of a "hybrid" cloud strategy; and more than 40% of heavy cloud users plan to spend money on open source and standards projects.

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