Security in the Cloud is All About Your Job!
As a cloud provider hosting desktops, servers and second site backup for global accounting firms, large automobile manufacturers and small law firms/healthcare organizations all around the country, we have heard a lot about security concerns in the cloud. Often times we are dealing with the IT organization within the business and their main concern seems to be security in the cloud. So, we walk them through our enterprise class infrastructure, our technology stack of companies that are global leaders in their respective fields and our extremely robust security practices and policies with multiple layers of security (physical, network and virtual).
For most, this gets them comfortable with the not so intuitive fact that security for your business is more robust in a cloud provider’s hands, as a cloud provider’s mere existence is an offshoot of its security practices and policies (vs. your business which focuses on making widgets or whatever else it does, but security certainly not being the core of business values). For some, this still didn’t do the trick – security was a big concern.
Over time, we realized that there are actually two fears about cloud computing that deal with security – data security and job security. Organizations might get comfortable with data security but their IT side of the house doesn’t feel comfortable with job security. The cloud was supposed to be this evil thing that was going to eliminate jobs for local IT departments, but truth of the matter is that job elimination hasn’t actually happened. IT managers and professionals are working with increasingly restrained resources under impossible deadlines, but that has always been the case.
A report by Deloitte, published in the The Wall Street Journal’s CIO Journal, points to new opportunities cloud is creating for IT departments. If anything, cloud computing is increasing complexity and workloads, creating more demand for IT skills. Deloitte examined three organizations that have deployed cloud applications and found only a total of two IT professionals across the three organizations lost their jobs because of the cloud.
Cloud is increasing demand for a fusion of IT and business skills at these organizations. Deloitte reports that rather than diminish in-house IT departments, it is generating more “value-added” activities such as “high-end software development, business analytics, enterprise architecture, and strategic vendor relationship management.”
IT is no longer just a back office function where they are expected to keep email and applications running. Cloud has transformed IT by taking the daily, mundane and time-consuming tasks out of their hands and enabling them to spend more time becoming strategic to the business. This could mean working closer with other departments to drive synergies, gaining more certifications or focusing on the value-add portion of their job descriptions. The new job description focuses them to work with an outside cloud provider to think deeper about how technology interacts with business to create more revenue growth, productivity and margin expansion.
As a business owner, make sure that your IT department isn’t resisting cloud for the wrong reasons. As an IT professional, it’s time to become more strategic to the organization and stop worrying about job security. The cloud is here to help (and stay) –take the helping hand or your competitors will.