Why IT Is Letting the Inmates Run the Asylum

March 8, 2013 No Comments

IT’s latest trend seems to be one of, to borrow a colorful expression, the inmates running the asylum.

More companies are relying on their employees’ cloud preferences and incorporating their personal choices of cloud apps into CIO-approved production boosters. So instead of directives coming from the top down, such as “you must use this cloud-based calendar to schedule client meetings,” employees are setting the tone on what works for them – and the enterprise is listening.

A recent study from CDW (PDF) proves that a major driver of corporate cloud adoption is users’ experiences of consumer services.

“I set up a full library of videos on a cloud at home and thought it would be a great idea to do something similar with our training videos,” said one CIO at a midsize business in CDW’s report.

Nearly three quarters of respondents (73%) claimed that, in their company, employees’ use of personal cloud apps has “significantly influenced” the decision to move wholesale to the cloud. Similarly, just over three in five (61%) cloud-using organizations agreed that employee personal devices have culminated in a faster move to the cloud, according to an article on CloudComputingNews.net.

It’s also the case with IT professionals – two-thirds agreed that their personal use of cloud has influenced the company in terms of adoption.

“I always thought we could use Apple iCloud for our judges’ scheduling calendars. It works very well,” wrote a federal government IT systems engineer.

The report also revealed storage was the most important cloud system for higher education (31%) and local government bodies (19%).

Cloud storage is big business, and even though the market is dominated by a handful of large players, several upstarts are making a solid impression with organizations looking to enter the next phase of the transformative technology that is the cloud.

Box is an online storage and collaboration service that finished 2012 with nearly $70 million in revenue, up 160 percent from 2011, according to a recent article on Forbes.com. Co-founder Aaron Levie figures he can double that this year, but that’s not exactly what he’s after.

Levie wants to create a transformative technology company for the mobile era, one that will become the glue connecting any big company’s myriad data and documents across all of its disparate software applications and makes them accessible securely on a tablet or phone, according to Forbes.com.

It’s a grand ambition, but one that seems attainable considering the exploding interest in the cloud.

The growing wave of more-convenient-to-own cloud-based business software, which began last decade, has swelled to dozens of startups now hitting the enterprise market with flexible pricing, mobile access and tools that make doing business as easy as using Facebook, according to Forbes.com.

And established cloud players such as Rackspace continue to support the always-on, always-mobile requirements of businesses today.

“Super Storm Sandy knocked out our electricity for days. But Rackspace kept our email up and running 100 percent without fail. With Rackspace Email on our mobile devices, we could communicate with our customers and, in a small way, help alleviate the impact of the disaster for them,” said Otto Torrisi, IT manager at Atlantic Scale Company.

Patrick1 Why IT Is Letting the Inmates Run the Asylum

Patrick Burke is a writer and editor based in the greater New York area and occasionally blogs for Rackspace Hosting

Patrick Burke is a writer and editor based in the greater New York area and occasionally blogs for Rackspace Hosting

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