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Tethered to the launchpad? Webinar explores way to find lift-off

Published: February 26th, 2016 By: IT World Canada Staff

Every cloud may have a silver lining, but for a growing number of companies, the cloud is also creating an unmanageable amount of work.

ON DEMAND WEBINAR

Who do you think you are? A “personality” quiz for managed services

Join Jim Love, CIO, ITWC and his special guests as they discuss managed services. How to choose? What’s best for you and your organization? Does your organization have a unique “personality”” that affects what you do – or should choose?

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Emerging technologies, like cloud, big data and analytics, have shown they can propel business to new and dizzying heights, but participants in a recent ITWC webinar heard that ineffective management of the technologies is keeping some companies tethered to the launch pad.

Webinar host ITWC CIO Jim Love pointed to a 2013 study for research firm Forrester that revealed that almost half (49 per cent) of the IT operations surveyed waste more than 20 per cent of their operational resources on tracking and correcting problems.

Not enough companies do the required research to make sure the outsourcing solutions they choose can deliver on the promise of getting them out from under burdensome IT management and focused on shooting for the stars, said Love.

Sponsored by business technology platforms provider Cogeco Peer 1, the webinar, Who Do You Think You Are? featured an expert panel including Steve Delaney, CIO for leading Canadian mortgage firm MCAP, Doug Ross, MCAP’s director of data centre operations, Susan Bowen, vice-president and general manager of EMEA at Cogeco Peer 1, and Gerhard Lerchster, Cogeco Peer 1’s director of product management.

Bowen agreed businesses are struggling with IT system complexity, tight capital expenditures, security and compliance, and a shortage of internal IT expertise and skills. To overcome those challenges, she said corporate leadership needs to be focused with laser precision on their core business goals – while maintaining the flexibility to scale IT service levels more efficiently when growth occurs.

The right managed services can help a client focus on their competitive advantage by taking care of essential, but non-core activities like business security and compliance, said Lerchster.

“It’s really a challenge that IT is facing…how do we (foster) business enablement within the current IT infrastructure?” said Lerchster.

Finding the right managed service provider requires any company to take a hard look in the mirror and assess their IT Identity, said Love, noting a recent ITWC – Cogeco Peer 1 “IT personality” white paper and quiz would be a good starting spot for self-evaluation.

“There’s a big difference in the managed services needs of a company that identifies as poised, prepped and prudent and one that feels they are on the edge and loving it,” said Love.

Building a managed services business case is complex and crucial. Parties to the transaction must consider key factors including risk, budget and which technology and services work best in-house versus what can be outsourced, but often the fit with a partner comes down to culture.

“Companies need to ensure that any managed services partner is a good fit with their organization’s culture as well as their strategic technology needs.”

MCAP was acutely aware of the need for a cultural fit when it when looking for service provider that could help it focus on its winning mortgage and lending business by managing the storage and security issues that were eating up valuable time and resources.

“We were looking for more than technical competency,” said Delaney. The company was looking to shift to a situation where a technology partner became a seamless extension of its internal IT department.