CIOs Need To Make Sure That They Are Ready For Clouds: Both Business And Personal

by drjim on November 14, 2012

CIOs need to be ready to deal with all sorts of clouds

CIOs need to be ready to deal with all sorts of clouds

Quick question: what is the #1 job of a CIO? Hmm, good question, eh? Although this should really be part of the definition of information technology, I’m pretty sure that we could sit around and debate just exactly what is the #1 job of a CIO all day; however, I’m also pretty sure that we could agree that bringing innovation into the business has to be one of the top jobs of both the CIO and the entire IT department. Now the big question is just exactly how should we go about doing this?

Make Your IT Department “Cloud Friendly”?

We all know that the era of the cloud is just about ready to arrive. However, CIOs need to take the lead and make sure that their IT departments are ready for this change. The first thing that the CIO is going to need to do is to create a plan for the IT department to use cloud services.

What this means is that the IT department needs to come up with a way to transition from not using any cloud apps to making them a part of everyday life. Don’t wait for the company’s business units to push for cloud based applications – have the IT department take the lead!

Taking the lead means that your IT department is going to have to create models that will help you to deal with a cloud based world. This will include dealing with purchasing, integrating, monitoring, compliance, and supporting. One way to make this happen sooner rather than later is for the CIO to establish the requirement that every software RFP now must have at least one software-as-a-service (SaaS) option.

Get Ready For Employees To Start To Bring Their Own Cloud To Work

It used to be that CIOs only had to worry about their employees bringing thumb drives or floppy disks from home into work. That’s all changed now. With the arrival of so-called “personal cloud” services such as Apple’s highly touted iCloud or Dropbox or SkyDrive your employees can now easily bring their own personal cloud into the work place.

This is going to happen no matter what you want to happen. The question is how do you want to respond to it? You can, of course, always resist the arrival of personal clouds and spend your time blocking them. However, you’ll eventually lose.

A better plan for CIOs is to take the time to help the company’s employees figure out how to deal with their personal clouds. You’re company is going to need to have a plan for how employees deal with a cloud that may contain both professional and personal data.

What All Of This Means For You

Every business looks to their IT department to lead the way when it comes to evaluating new technologies that have shown up in the IT sector. New and innovative ideas can come from these types of evaluations and so the CIO needs to make sure that he or she is out in front leading the charge.

The arrival of the era of the cloud provides CIOs with many different ways to be innovative. However, every IT department is going to struggle as they transform from a non-cloud to a cloud environment. CIOs need to help this transition by insisting that cloud based solutions be considered when purchasing new software. The cloud is not just something that the company builds – your employees will have their own personal clouds. This means that the CIO needs to come up with a plan for how to deal with personal clouds. The use of such clouds will only grow ad so this issue must be dealt with now!

Yes, the life of a CIO is busy. However, making the time to do the proper evaluation of new technologies is a critical part of the job and is key to the importance of information technology. Do this task right, and you will have shown the entire IT department how to remind the rest of the company just how valuable IT really is.

– Dr. Jim Anderson
Blue Elephant Consulting –
Your Source For Real World IT Department Leadership Skills™

Question For You: Do you think that tablets should be introduced into the company slowly because the technology is changing so fast?

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What We’ll Be Talking About Next Time

When you become a CIO, the reason that you’ve been able to achieve this position is because you know everything that you’ll ever have to know, right? You’ll never make a mistake again and every decision that you’ll make will be the right decision. Correct? I’m betting that you are probably shaking your head right about now and that’s a good thing. You’re always going to need some help. Looks like it’s time for you to go out and find a mentor.

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