6 Tips for Combating Shadow IT Once and for All

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Current IT Infrastructure

Research and understand your current IT infrastructure.

Before embarking on any significant digital transformation effort, it makes good sense to take stock of where you are starting. What does your current environment look like? How is your company's IT infrastructure utilized by existing applications? In what ways can you use this information to plan for necessary infrastructure upgrades based on the corporate needs? By gaining insight into the infrastructure utilization, IT will be able to ensure enough resources are allocated not only for existing services but also to accommodate future corporate needs, such as rolling out new services and increasing the number of users. You can also use this information to plan for necessary infrastructure upgrades.

It's a common complaint across the enterprise: IT is too slow moving and far too restrictive to give corporate stakeholders, such as lines of business (LOBs), CMOs and employees, the tools they need to succeed in their jobs. However, the digital transformation that we are seeing many industries undergo is making this notion a little more complex. Easily accessible applications, lack of bring-your-own-device (BYOD) policies and free cloud services are giving employees the option to go around their IT departments and utilize alternative services. Thus, enterprises are essentially creating "shadow IT" organizations, in which their employees sidestep IT and create a digital transformation in and of themselves.

And this might sound like a great solution – employees are happy with their environments while their IT departments are none the wiser. However, creating a shadow IT organization is not without its flaws, especially when IT departments don't have complete visibility of their employees' systems. If they don't have full visibility, their companies are much more vulnerable to cybersecurity attacks, service outages and other risks that may threaten mission-critical applications.

In order to best mitigate these risks, IT departments need better insight into their users' traffic behavior so they can identify the cause of any threats. Furthermore, it's possible for IT to reverse these trends entirely and make CIOs and IT teams the go-to partners for what was previously considered shadow IT. To do this, however, they must first demonstrate the necessary agility and high quality of complex service assurance that users are looking for with the following six strategies, identified by Michael Segal, director of enterprise solutions, NETSCOUT.


Related Topics : A Big Market for Big Data Jobs, Midmarket CIO, IT Management Automation, SharePoint, Technology Markets

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