From the Blogosphere
Cloud and Shadow IT – An Inevitable Pairing? By @EFeatherston | @CloudExpo #Cloud
And does it matter?
By: Ed Featherston
Jan. 30, 2016 02:45 PM
You can't seem to have a conversation about cloud technology and its impact on the business without the topic of Shadow IT coming up. The two concepts at times seem so tightly intertwined, one would think there is a certain inevitability, almost a causal linkage between them. Shadow IT tends to be an emotional topic for many, dividing people into one of two camps. One camp tends to see Shadow IT as a great evil putting companies, their data and systems at risk by implementing solutions without oversight or governance. Another camp sees Shadow IT as the great innovators that are helping the company succeed by allowing the business to bypass a slow and stagnant IT organization. Does going to the cloud inherently mean there will be Shadow IT? If it does, is that necessarily a bad or good thing?
All of this has happened before, and will happen again....
It is human nature to find the shortest distance between two points. When there is a roadblock, perceived or actual, to getting to their destination, people will try to find a way around that roadblock. If the roadblock, perceived or actual, is seen as the IT organization, the shortcut tends to manifest as a Shadow IT implementation.
I don't think anyone would argue that the cloud is a disruptive technology. It takes the in-house resource paradigm and turns it on its head. The cloud is also hot. Gartner expects that by 2016 the bulk of IT spend will be for the cloud. Business units are deluged with the hype. Cloud solution vendors are knocking on their doors, frequently bypassing the CIO. Business units can purchase technology solutions out of operational budgets rather than capital. They can bypass IT and the CIO entirely, and many do. The cloud definitely can and frequently does contribute to the Shadow IT pattern, of that there is no doubt.
It's not about the cloud. It's not about Shadow IT. It's about the business.
Second, if a business group has implemented a solution that resulted in Shadow IT, do not treat the business group and that Shadow IT implementation as the enemy. They are not doing this for evil purposes. They are doing it to accomplish business goals. They perceived impediments in the current environment and moved forward to solve their problem. It is inherent on the IT organization to work with the business and understand the needs that drove them to a Shadow IT implementation. Work with the business to integrate their solution into your environment in a way that protects your company's systems and data while providing for the particular group's needs.
Back to the original question
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