Gartner Blog Network

Far from diminishing the CIO, Cloud ensures a bright future.

by Michael Maoz  |  April 26, 2013  |  1 Comment

The complexity of the the “No Software” challenge is overwhelming the line of business buyers in Sales, Marketing and Customer Support. The idea of subscribing to a cool new software package and building a complex sales force or customer service team on your own, with your own budget, and then Oliver-style coming to CIO and asking, “Please sir….” when the going gets tough… well it’s just not working out.

All of the old issues are the new issues: latency, integration techniques, consistency, security, compliance, availability, contracting and procurement: it’s like your kids realizing as they get older that you are smarter than you first appeared.  Oh – six sales divisions procured six separate setups of an application? The social team has three separate tools and wants seamless integration? Oops, the Cloud vendor has no SLA for disaster recovery and doesn’t pass EU Data Privacy rules? And now you want the CIO to come help? Isn’t this rich?

As software as a service makes further inroads, especially multi-tenanted, there is a higher degree of urgency in synchronizing Cloud efforts currently disconnected from any central planning. What we were gaining on the roundabouts we are losing on the swings, and IT has great experience in straightening things out.

So how do ‘we’ begin, when the genesis of the entire problem of SaaS proliferation and disjointedness happened because there is no “we?” Well: the CEO needs to jump in. All of the pieces will fall into place. In the meantime, it is time for CIOs to map out the diverse SaaS application sets drifting around the enterprise and come up with a plan to harmonize the efforts.

What do you think?

Category: applications  cio  cloud  crm  innovation-and-customer-experience  leadership  saas-and-cloud-computing  sales-force-automation  sfa  social-crm  social-networking  social-software  strategic-planning  

Michael Maoz
VP Distinguished Analyst
13 years at Gartner
26 years IT industry

Michael Maoz is a research vice president and distinguished analyst in Gartner Research. His research focuses on CRM and customer-centric Web strategies. Mr. Maoz is the research leader for both the customer service and support strategies area and customer-centric Web… Read Full Bio

Thoughts on Far from diminishing the CIO, Cloud ensures a bright future.

  1. At one company, where I worked in Corp IT, a VP needed a way to share files with prospects, vendors and other individuals outside the company. However, there were no cheap, off-the-shelf software packages that filled the needs, our in-house developers were working on projects and weren’t able to build something for us, and there was no way we were going to be able to teach him how to properly use FTP.

    So he went with an early web-based file sharing service, similar to the services many people use today. This concerned us, as we didn’t know what sensitive data he was putting online, if he was securing it properly, and in general how he was using it.

    In hindsight, the better solution for us as a resource-constrained IT department was not to try to prevent him from using this service, but to properly manage it. If we had taken the initiatives to solve the problem with a third-party service, we would have been the ones to set the security requirements, scope the usability features, and make it available to the entire organization as needed. This would have help IT retain the control and management, but not have to rely on the burden of in-house resources for such a simple need.

    The same applies to Corp IT and cloud providers today, whether it’s SaaS, IaaS or some other -aaS offering. Corp IT should survey the landscape of cloud service providers, both in-use in their organization and those not presently being used, and begin partnering with them to make those services available to their internal customers under IT’s watchful eye. This helps reduce the resource burden on IT, allows them to maintain control and compliance as needed, and ultimately deliver working solutions faster and more often.

Comments are closed

Comments or opinions expressed on this blog are those of the individual contributors only, and do not necessarily represent the views of Gartner, Inc. or its management. Readers may copy and redistribute blog postings on other blogs, or otherwise for private, non-commercial or journalistic purposes, with attribution to Gartner. This content may not be used for any other purposes in any other formats or media. The content on this blog is provided on an "as-is" basis. Gartner shall not be liable for any damages whatsoever arising out of the content or use of this blog.