CIOs have been urged to be transparent, and to offer clear direction when it comes to changes in the roles of IT staff within the company, when making the decision to shift to cloud services.
The recommendations come from T-Systems, one of the key providers of cloud services in Singapore and Asia Pacific.
MIS Asia editor Ross O. Storey shared thoughts with Uwe Schlager, Managing Director, T-Systems, Singapore, about the unique human resources challenges that Asia enterprises face relating to the shift to cloud services.
What are the unique HR challenges that CIOs currently face in Singapore and the Asia Pacific?
One can't deny that the Cloud Age is here. It's no longer just talk or wait and see situation like a few years back when it was just still the marketing hype. It is clear that the Cloud is happening and CIOs must be aware that this is not just happening in their IT backyard but they need to ensure that the organisation is well equipped for the changes ahead. While CIOs need to make business owners and company stakeholders aware of the benefits of cloud computing, CIOs need to ensure that the right training and path of transition for his team in light of two pertinent issues - the management of staff within the organization and their corresponding reaction to change and readiness for change.
In some cases when an outsourcing arrangement is in place that usually leads to reductions of in-house IT staff or the transfer of employees to the cloud provider, the morale of the team would be affected. You can implement cloud but you can't run that without the people. It's just not possible to run IT without people.
Hence, CIOs need to manage the willingness of employees to actively support changes, communicate the changes respective stakeholders and ensuring a smooth transition and integration of transferred employees to the new 'employer'. This needs to be executed while overcoming the challenge of ensuring a smooth transition from the existing IT ecosystem to the new cloud platform, and implementing new services from the cloud provider without jeopardizing staff morale.
How is the role of IT within organizations changing due to the emergence of new technologies like enterprise cloud applications?
Efficiency, cost savings, flexibility! These are the three most frequent words or objectives if you would call it that I hear always at customer meetings. With the rapid adoption of cloud computing, IT organisations are witnessing a shift in their current job scopes from tactical resource provisioning to strategic resource planning, with an emphasis on achieving the most efficient, lowest cost infrastructure possible. Smart sourcing strategy that fits the business objectives! IT is about enabling the business, connecting the employees with new collaboration tools and with the new technologies, IT is becoming more service-oriented and capable of providing value-added services, with less emphasis on maintaining in-house systems, networks and architectures. I would even call it IT-as-a-Service.
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