Converting to Cloud
What is cloud computing?
Cloud computing refers to the delivery of computing resources over the Internet. Instead of keeping data on your own hard drive or updating applications for your needs, you use a service over the Internet, at another location, to store your information or use its applications. Doing so may give rise to certain privacy implications.
When you store your photos online instead of on your home computer, or use webmail or a social networking site, you are using a “cloud computing” service. If you are an organization, and you want to use, for example, an online invoicing service instead of updating the in-house one you have been using for many years, that online invoicing service is a “cloud computing” service.
How cloud computing will reshape your business
The cloud is rendering the division between IT and business obsolete, and the hierarchical org chart with it, writes Mark Ridley, director of technology at recruitment website reed.co.uk.
Technology has always shaped the organisations that use it. When business academics Harold Leavitt and Thomas Whistler coined the term “information technology” back in 1958, they predicted that it would cause large companies to “recentralize” and trigger “a radical reorganization of middle management”.
But information technology, when Leavitt and Whistler defined it, comprised three distinct themes: “techniques for processing”, “the application of statistical and mathematical methods to decision-making”, and “the simulation of higher-order thinking through computer programmes”.
These themes may still be part of the modern IT department’s remit, but the work that IT does today is far broader than Leavitt and Whistler could have imagined.
Unsurprisingly, the shape of IT departments has changed hugely since the 1950s. And today technology is changing the scope of “IT” again – so much so that the structure of entire organisations must and will change.
Today’s IT departments undertake an enormous range of tasks, from buying and supplying desktops and printers to statistical analysis of data on a scale that could never have been imagined even 20 years ago. Those tasks require a broader range of complementary skills than ever before.