The big news, from my point of view, from VMworld in Barcelona was the announcement that VMware has acquired the Desktop-as-a-Service (DaaS) vendor Desktone. VMware is probably the leading vendor for enterprise virtual desktop technology (i.e. virtual desktop infrastructure or VDI – with their Horizon product line) – though Citrix might dispute this. Desktone are the leading provider of DaaS technology for service providers – that is virtual desktops delivered from the cloud on an as-a-Service basis.
I was discussing outsourcing with a friend the other day. I work in government IT, and outsourcing is used widely in government. He was discussing the tricky nature of being brought in as an independent vendor to the outsourcing vendor. What this brought up was something that is often overlooked in outsourcing deals, especially major ones. That is: any organisation that outsources a function (such as its IT) usually does so in the hope of saving money by shedding large amounts of staff. But, they usually don’t factor in that they will need additional staff with different skills to manage that outsourcer.
This is my fifth post on Bring Your Own Device (BYOD). In other posts I’ve considered support and managing employee expenses. Here, I want to change tack a bit, and ask: What are the ramifications of consumer law for BYOD? While this may seem like a strange question, it is something that you will need to consider for some types of BYOD.
This is the fourth post in my series on BYOD. In my previous post on expense management I looked at how an organisation can pay for, or reimburse employees who pay for, the use of standard mobile services (voice and data) within a BYOD approach. What I had momentarily forgotten was the other key area of expenses that we face in the BYOD space – paying for apps. The problem with apps is similar. In order to make the most of smartphones and tablets users need access to apps – and many of these come at a cost. How does an organisation make sure that users have the apps they need?
This is the third post in my series on Bring Your Own Device approaches to end user computing. In my first article I enumerated the different types of approaches you can take to BYOD. In my second post I talked about different support models for BYOD. In this article I want to examine options around managing the expenses of employees who bring their own devices.
A recent article on ReadWriteWeb reminded me of one of the more annoying sources of noise about cloud computing – the double standards of US government agencies and companies around cloud data residency. On the one hand US government agencies complain that other countries are discriminating against its cloud service providers by raising legitimate concerns about data privacy in the US, while at the same time as making Google create special government clouds which keep all data in the US.
As the cloud computing market matures, consumers of cloud services are beginning to realise that successful use of the cloud means more than just getting a cheap and convenient service. Two new documents from the European Union and New Zealand highlight the importance of covering off other factors when buying or using cloud services. The European Network and Information Security Agency (ENISA) has released a document – Procure Secure – which sets out guidelines on how to measure and monitor security of cloud computing services on an ongoing basis. The New Zealand Computer Society is facilitating a Cloud Computing Code of Practice, and has just released a draft for public consultation.
In general I think cloud computing is a great thing. Elsewhere I have talked about the benefits that it can bring to many organisations. Many of the positive financial benefits of cloud computing are well-known: pay only for what you need or use; cost certainty; being able to reduce the cost of ICT as the demand for ICT services reduces; reducing the need for massive upfront investment in infrastructure and so on. One of the benefits that I have been more sceptical about, however, is the way that cloud computing moves the cost of ICT from capital expenditure to operational expenditure. From my point of view money is money. Merely moving it from one line on the budget (capital expenditure or capex) to another line on the budget (operational expenditure or opex) seems to me to be no benefit at all. On investigating the issue further it seems that there are some unusual circumstances where this is a bad thing.
This post is dedicated to my colleagues in the Government ICT Supply Management Office within the New Zealand Government. I’ve learnt a lot from working with them over the last few months.
When working in the ICT architecture of an organisation – whether enterprise architecture or solution architecture – your architecture will always be better for a well-informed engagement with the commercial side of ICT. In this post I will describe why it is important to understand the commercial aspects of ICT in order to deliver more successful ICT solutions, and how working with your commercial team can assist in this success.