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Decentralised IT is becoming the new norm, report suggests

Research from virtualisation king VMware finds that management of technology is shifting away from IT to other departments

Almost two thirds of UK business leaders believe the management of technology is shifting away from IT to other departments, according to a study from VMware.

The virtualisation giant polled 200 IT decision makers and  line of business managers and found that this ‘decentralisation’ of IT was already delivering tangible benefits.

More than half (56%) said that it improved their ability to launch new products and services to market with greater speed, while 63% said that it gave their business more freedom to drive innovation.

The devolution of technology ownership also appears to behaving a positive effect on employee retention, with 53% saying that the shift had led to increased job satisfaction amongst staff.

It’s not all strawberries and cream, though. Nearly two-thirds (63%) of leaders across the business believe that decentralisation is causing a duplication of spend on IT services, while 62% said that accountability was becoming an issue. And 59% said that it was leading to the purchasing of unsecure solutions.

It's perhaps not surprising then, to discover that the movement towards decentralisation is happening against the wishes of IT teams. Nearly 70% of IT leaders said that they wanted IT to become more centralised. In particular, IT leaders feel that core functions like network security and compliance (79%), disaster recovery/business continuity (46%) and storage (39%) should remain firmly in their control.

“It’s ‘transform or die’ for many businesses, with a tumultuous economic environment and radically evolved competitive landscape upturning the way they operate,” says Joe Baguley, vice president & chief technology officer, EMEA, VMware. “Managing this change is the great organisational challenge companies face. The rise of the cloud has democratised IT, with its ease of access and attractive costing models, so it’s no surprise that lines of business have jumped on this opportunity.” 

“Too often, however, we’re seeing this trend left unchecked and without adequate IT governance, meaning that organisations across EMEA are driving up costs, compromising security and muddying the waters as to who does what, as they look to evolve,” he added.



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