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August 25, 2015

Mystifying IT jargon creates costly UK business ignorance

Three quarters of businesses have no idea what VoIP is.

By James Nunns

Cloud and WiFi may be used by the majority of businesses in the UK, but less than half know what they actually are.

Although these technologies play an important role in the daily lives of business people, the UK’s working population appears to be in the dark about connectivity.

According to research from Daisy Group, less than half (43%) knew what cloud, with a further 44% in the dark about fibre broadband. Despite WiFi’s ubiquitous nature, 20% didn’t know what it is.

While buzz words frequently appear, it is surprising to see that many in business have such poor awareness of important technology.

The research also found that only 30% knew that ADSL was standard broadband that uses copper wiring to upload and download information over the Internet. Three quarters didn’t know that Voice over Internet protocol is a type of phone system that uses the Internet.

The research highlights several concerning gaps in knowledge which could play an important role in business not being able to be as efficient or technologically proactive as they could be.

Kate O’Brien, Marketing Director at Daisy Group, said: "Our research highlighted that there is a gap in understanding the technologies that have been designed for business.

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"In particular, we were shocked to find that 75% of people didn’t know what VoIP is, especially considering it is a billion pound industry which has been rocketing in popularity over the last five years, due to its ability to dramatically cut businesses’ phone bills."

The findings reveal a need for those working in IT and digital technologies to perhaps cut back on the jargon and to make technologies easier for business people to understand.

O’Brien, said: "Otherwise businesses will continue to waste money and miss out on growth opportunities simply through ignorance about what is available."

The research questioned 1141 UK SME business owners and managers. Although they had reasonable understanding of connectivity, many couldn’t explain fibre broadband (29%) or the cloud (26%).

The most confusing technology though appears to be data centres, with 92% mystified by them.

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