Today’s IT department finds itself in a precarious position: balance stakeholder demands against the need to maintain governance, compliance and control. Environments are becoming more diverse and complex while executive leadership needs CIOs and IT departments to start contributing to the bottom line through increased productivity.
As a result, many CIOs are looking at the cloud as an easier way to deliver solutions to their stakeholders without adding more chaos to their already complex internal systems. The benefits of cloud solutions are very attractive to the CIO: subscription model, no long-term commitments, easy deployment, low cost of ownership, no capital to invest, solutions that meet the individual needs of the stakeholders, etc.
But is the reduced chaos a reality? When I said “solutions to meet the individual needs of the stakeholders,” a vision jumped into my head. I saw a picture of a cloud with 10-20 (even 30) different solutions. As a CIO, I suddenly realized that this image looks very similar to my IT solutions map. As I broke out in a cold sweat, I realized I just transferred the IT challenges to IT cloud challenges.
In the cloud, I don’t see the demand for these 30 solutions to be integrated – but they still need to talk to each other. For example, a cloud-based CRM needs to talk to a cloud Knowledge base; which needs to talk to my cloud Billing system and so on. But instead of IT holding the responsibility of finding a way to integrate these systems, now IT has to coordinate the efforts of multiple vendors to help do the integration. Now I need professional negotiators, not IT technical people. It’s a different type of chaos – a “claos,” if you will.
They only way this will work is to incorporate sophisticated third party solutions that can index and federate information from many sources. These systems could work easily in both the cloud and on premise to consolidate and deliver information from multiple systems into one interface. At the end of the day, these systems will solve the “claos” problem.