Leadership

IT's new role as compliance officers

Application developers and their boardroom allies are on a fast track -- and IT looks like the bad guy for handing out tickets. Can companies solve this internal dilemma over the use of cloud solutions?

Companies face a difficult balancing act when faced with the challenge of increasing revenue and profitability. Executives push business unit leaders to expand portfolios, increase market share, and leap past the competition -- all, in short order.

To do so, business unit leaders seek agile IT infrastructures in order to develop applications as quickly as possible. Since these initiatives are often dependent on IT, internal IT teams are left scrambling to serve up infrastructure to fulfill these needs -- and do it quickly.

This is where the balancing act -- agility vs. security -- comes into play.

IT teams are diligent about ensuring company information assets are secure. This requires time to evaluate implications and put a strategy and infrastructure in place. Unfortunately, business units don't have much time to spare. As a result, business units often take the path of least resistance and bypass internal IT teams and sample outside services -- the public cloud.

Bypassing internal IT teams is cause for concern. Will sensitive information leak? Is customer data made easy prey for hackers? Do companies face lawsuits for failing to meet federally mandated compliance rules? Is the services provider able to recover the data? What will be the cost of outside services?

Application developers and their boardroom allies are on a fast track -- and IT looks like the bad guy for handing out tickets. Can companies solve this internal dilemma over the use of cloud solutions?

Ultimately, organizations will leverage both public and private clouds (a hybrid model). Many will build internal (private) clouds to alleviate the concerns above. Private clouds enable internal IT teams to deliver IT as a service, as well as provide the business with needed agility, security, and assurance of recovery, etc.

The same organizations will supplement their private cloud by leveraging the public cloud. Each form of cloud computing offers compelling benefits. It gets down to balancing the need to drive revenue with the need to protect information assets and choosing the cloud model that best meets the needs of business.

Insights from Kent Christenson, Virtualization & Cloud Practice Director at Datalink.

1 comments
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Whether the solution is cloud-based or 'old-school application-based', the problem boils down to the IT department being expected to give each department's projects top priority at the exact same time, while attending to their own responsibilities as well. So the end-user business departments will keep side-stepping this obstacle and doing things themselves regardless. Speed and (perceived) revenue generation will trump security every time, in their eyes. If things fall apart, they can always point the finger at IT to take the blame. They're the ones that are supposed to be in charge of these things, right?