This is a common question from company directors and a big concern for IT managers, however the myth that moving infrastructure and applications in the cloud removes the need for internal IT is far from the truth.
If we take a moment to look back at IT 10 years ago before the rise of “as a service” vendors, internal IT departments spent their time managing and developing applications whilst maintaining the underling hardware and infrastructure required for their business. However this was pre the mobile revolution, IT departments are now expected to deliver applications that work irrespective of location or time and meet the changing demands of today’s business world. This has led to more and more internal applications and services being moved into the cloud based solutions.
This means there is less physical equipment for the IT department to manage leading to the question “Do I still need all of my IT team?” In some cases it might be the case that once they have removed a lot of the physical equipment they don’t need all of the current IT team. However in most cases rather than downsizing the IT department it allows the internal IT teams to focus on end user experience and innovations that ensure their business can keep up with the rate of technology innovation.
Essentially the role of the IT department has ceased to be a team of engineers that worry about flashing lights and downtime (although these roles still exist at service providers). Instead IT departments now require a different set of skills that allow them to deliver the end user experience and business tools that ensure their business keeps up. This includes being able to understand and sell new technology to internal stake holders, have a deep understanding of not only the business but the employees to ensure the tools they use are fit for purpose and don’t force them down the shadow IT path and finally negotiating and managing external cloud providers ensuring that those critical business applications are available at all times with little to no downtime.
The business world is moving to a more mobile and innovative place and therefore it only makes sense that the IT department evolves too and embraces the change.