Companies hoping to develop new capabilities before their rivals don't have to wait for new hardware or software installation. The current generation of IT solutions is available in the cloud. That means direct access to new capabilities could be on the way, with providers handling the actual management of the programs. There is a downside to this rapid deployment, however - companies could end up experiencing a serious problem with data silos. Too many applications, each producing a mass of information, could clog systems and contribute to the rising threat of data sprawl.
Cloud on the rise
A recent article by The Australian found that purchasing software in a cloud-based model has become a go-to tactic for enterprise IT leaders. The news source cited Gartner research which indicates that companies are now replacing parts of their infrastructure with alternatives in the cloud. The article noted that cloud applications were more prominent as an addition to existing systems rather than an alternative as recently as two years prior. NetSuite CEO Zach Nelson told The Australian that leaders today want customization, and that is where cloud offerings can help them.
The source reported that Nelson's firm is predicated upon the idea that clients at small to medium-sized businesses are interested in adding high-powered IT systems. This is something they can do on a cloud model, whereas the on-premise version of such technology may prove too expensive. According to Gartner research, the Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) model is on the rise, with 77 percent of respondents expressing interest in spending more money on SaaS applications, while 17 percent are holding steady. Scaling back such efforts is barely even on the corporate radar.
Taming the data
The information created by a host of SaaS deployments can be a burden or an asset. All it takes to turn the former into the latter is an enterprise search and indexing solution. These tools aggregate the information that already exists in companies' systems into a user-friendly framework that can be easily accessed during the work day. With the help of software like ViaWorks by VirtualWorks, IT leaders can ensure corporate forays into new cloud apps yield the intended results instead of just becoming disconnected data silos. These tools can also ensure the replaced systems are still accessible, with no data conversion needed.