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How Moving to the Cloud Impacts Your In-House IT Department

How Moving to the Cloud Impacts Your In-House IT Department

by Stephanie Faris on Friday, June 06 16:16

Cloud computing is increasingly becoming a way of life in most enterprises, with more than half of organizations turning to the cloud for growth. All of this change has information systems personnel nervous, as they see the need for software and hardware support dwindling, from the network level down to the desktop.

But cloud solutions don't eliminate the need for technical support personnel. Instead, these educated professionals relieved of day-to-day duties, freeing them up to focus on growing the technology side of an organization.

Vendor Liaison

The role of your IT department will continue beyond recommending a vendor and facilitating the migration. Management will need skilled, knowledgeable on-site staff to ensure customers are being protected and Service Level Agreements are being honored.

On a periodic basis, your IT department may be asked to meet with management for updates on any vendor issues. As the time to renew the contract approaches, management may count on in-house technology staff to determine whether the working relationship should continue or a new vendor should be chosen.

Compliance and Security

As hands-on as a cloud service provider is, an organization has a special relationship with its users and customers. This vested interest gives IT an important responsibility in a cloud-hosted environment, prompting professionals to monitor systems to ensure customer data is protected at all times.

Often using vendor-provided dashboards, internal staff have access to administrative tools. Using these tools, in-house administrators can set policies specific to an organization's preferences, including password requirements and blocked applications.

Business Improvement

Instead of troubleshooting issues, technology professionals will move into more of a business role, using their advanced knowledge to create and support major projects. Cloud-based software solutions have given businesses of all sizes the ability to implement business applications that improve productivity and streamline operations. To choose from the many options available, however, business staff need technology-minded professionals to offer guidance.

When choosing applications, businesses must opt for a solution that interacts with existing hardware and software. IT staff can test applications before implementation to work out any bugs and, once the application goes live, train users to use it.

Local Support

Even if cloud service providers are handling help desk tickets, a business still has a need to have on-site support for the PCs and mobile devices employees use each day. Once users have been trained, there will be the occasional need for one-on-one training, especially if an employee is new.

In the event an application has a bug impacting multiple users, IT staff can work with the vendor to identify the cause and find a remedy. For many vendors, speaking with an on-site staff member who speaks the language and has an advanced grasp of technology can speed up a process that would normally take multiple phone calls over several weeks.

The cloud is opening up exciting opportunities for businesses of all sizes, but it doesn't mean technical staff can't continue to take an active role in day-to-day operations. On-site technical personnel will always be needed, especially with businesses relying more on technology with each passing year.

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