Decentralized IT Management Becoming the New Normal

Digital transformation is clouding how IT departments control their organization's data and technology investments, says a new VMware study.

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CIOs and technology managers are operating under a cloud, at least when it comes to digital transformation.

A study released today by VMware and conducted by Vanson Bourne reveals that 69 percent of the 3,300 IT workers and business users surveyed by the firms agree that IT management had become more decentralized during the past three years. Essentially, IT departments are losing their once-ironclad grip on how data flows across their business and where its stored, raising a bevy of concerns.

Within enterprises, business units are increasingly taking it upon themselves to subscribe to software-as-a-service (SaaS) applications and other cloud-based IT solutions. While this approach often drives innovation and helps organizations attain their business goals faster, it comes with a price.

The IT decentralization trend has caused many organizations to purchase non-secure solutions (57 percent) and has pushed application development outside regulatory norms (60 percent), raising the specter of compliance issues down the road. Fifty-six percent of respondents said data protection is falling short in terms of regulatory compliance.

"These survey results reflect that cloud computing is continuing to move technology beyond IT, giving lines of business easy-to-use, flexible IT services to drive innovation within their domains," said Raghu Raghuram, chief operating officer at VMware Cloud Services and Products, in a statement.

Decentralization is also proving burdensome for both the IT and finance departments.

Many organizations (58 percent) are having troubling pinning the responsibility for IT on specific personnel or a team. Costs are rising at an average of 5.7 percent as a result. Sixty-one percent of respondents said they believe their organizations are sometimes paying for the same solution twice, an likely consequence of the limited visibility many organizations (57 percent) have into their overall IT spending habits.

So it comes as no surprise that IT departments want to take back control.

Most survey takers (65 percent) said they want a more centralized IT operation overseeing their technology environments. A majority (74 percent) also said they felt that IT departments should be the ones in charge of enabling their organization's line of business units to push innovation forward.

It may be easier said than done.

"IT leaders are increasingly responsible for managing tech sprawl and have a reputation for supporting a 'culture of no' in an effort to make the organization secure and manageable," wrote the company in a related blog post. "However, business demands and technology adoption trends make it extremely difficult for IT to keep pace with [business units]."

Pedro Hernandez is a contributing editor at Datamation. Follow him on Twitter @ecoINSITE.




Tags: IT management, Digital Transformation


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