In part one, we heard from Stewart Bond of Info-Tech Research Group on his predictions for the Managed File Transfer (MFT) market. Next up we have Terri McClure, Senior Analyst at ESG (@esganalysttmac), and her thoughts on the IT trends for 2014.
Changing Role of IT: Over the last year there has been a notable increase in number of end users and LOB managers choosing their own work platforms, resulting from increased consumerization and BYOD trends. In addition, cloud-based solutions like online file sharing applications make it incredibly easy for employees to purchase and deploy themselves with just a few clicks over the internet. As a result, IT is no longer a command and control role and many IT professionals are struggling with how to deal with these changes in order keep control over and secure company data. Some have tried to block unauthorized “rogue” application usage, only to find employees traveling to their local Starbucks, or using personal hotspots to bypass company VPN or networks. Now, more and more IT are embracing the change and proactively playing a more advisory role to help both employees be productive while simultaneously steering them toward a solution that will meet corporate needs around privacy and security.
Increase in Enterprise File Sharing: Corporate File sharing application usage is expanding throughout organizations and crossing organizational boundaries. In 2012 ESG research indicated that the majority of online file sharing and collaboration application usage was limited to departmental or groups, but over the last year we’ve seen more and more organizations using sync and share applications to collaborate not only across departments, but with external users like contractors, partners, and clients as well. To ease IT concerns around sharing corporate data, many vendors have responded by adding granular permission controls and including simple data loss prevention and digital rights management functionality.
Security: Security is still top of mind, but flexibility and the ability to integrate with existing IT systems/tools is increasingly important to IT. Security features like end to end encryption, antivirus, and remote wipe are still among the most requested sync and share features, but as solutions mature a certain level of security is becoming table stakes for enterprise IT. Customers are increasingly interested in the ability to integrate solutions with their existing storage solutions through hybrid or private cloud online file sharing deployments, and want increased flexibility with other existing tools (content management, backup, data analytics, mobile application management, etc.).
There is certainly not a lack of perspectives on the IT trends in the year ahead but I’m interested in what the readers think! Leave your thoughts below and feel free to keep this discussion going on Twitter with me @Cheri29.