But all this strategic planning and risk assessment assumes that the CIO knows which cloud vendors are being used. For every one that is on the strategic plan there are probably another 100 that business users have discovered. This is what I call the Stealth Cloud. “Stealth” because it infiltrates an organization unseen. Many of these Stealth Cloud apps have become a critical part of core operational processes. If or when they go down they put the company at risk. And this is a risk that has not even been assessed or understood by the CIO.
So how many Stealth apps were running on the Amazon servers that went down? How many business units suddenly found out that they were unable to work, had no workarounds or disaster recovery strategy? Could the squeals be heard all the way down the corridor in the IT department?
Maybe this is a strategy? Run an amnesty to get business users to tell you which cloud apps that are being used in each department, so a complete IT strategy can be devised. If you get no response switch off internet access for a day or two and listen … for the squeals.
Founder and CEO of Nimbus Partners. Ian Gotts is the author of six books including, Common Approach, Uncommon Results; Why Killer Products Don’t Sell; and two Thinking of … books on cloud computing. He is a prolific blogger with a rare ability to make the complex seem simple, which makes him a sought-after and entertaining conference speaker. His book, Thinking of … Offering a Cloud Solution? Ask the Smart Questions, articulates the opportunities and the challenges ISVs face in their transition to the cloud.