managed services

Managed services will become new norm, according to many CIOs

Guest author: Mike Alley, Director, IT Service Management

In a recent study, Logicalis found that IT leaders are beginning to see value in moving toward “as a service” infrastructure models – from security to servers. As CIOs aim to maintain strategic roles within their organizations, strategic functions like business analytics and mobility strategies are taking priority over day-to-day operations.

Solarseven/Shutterstock.com

External service providers might be the best way to free time and resources to meet their business goals. It is a subtle but substantial change that will keep the CIO relevant and recognized as the head of a critical and compelling business function. Furthermore, 30 percent of CIOs say they want to make better, more extensive use of managed service providers as they seek to reshape the IT function to allow them to focus on higher-value, more strategic activities – like enabling strategic business goals and mobile enterprises strategies.

For example, technology that was once seen as in-house only is now considered ripe for outsourced management by CIOs and IT directors looking for ways to regain lost time and re-establish their leadership positions through a services-led transformation. It was not long ago that CIOs would have been appalled at the idea of outsourcing security, but now nearly half say they are prepared to put security into the hands of a trusted partner.

Hype or ripe: Will “as-a-service” models become the new norm as CIOs aim to maintain their strategic roles in organizations?

4 reasons managed services are on the rise in the financial industry

Guest author: Mike Alley, Director, IT Service Management

According to financial advisory firm TABB Group, more than half of financial institutions will utilize managed services by 2016. The benefits of outsourcing infrastructure needs are abundant in the financial realm. Here are five key reasons why managed services are on the rise in the financial industry:

1. The move toward managed services has been heavily influenced by financial concerns. IT costs have evolved from major one-time spends into monthly operational expenses. As cloud-based managed solutions become more affordable, they continue to gain popularity among this group.

Scanrail/Bigstock

Scanrail/Bigstock

2. Managed services provide additional flexibility and quicker response times. This is critical in the financial industry as institutions work to provide the highest level customer service to their clients.

3. The concerns surrounding managed services are, not surprisingly, related to security. Financial institutions are held to the high standards of security by both official regulations and consumer expectations. Fortunately, security is also top-of-mind for managed service providers.

4. As technology continues to constantly change, financial institutions struggle to keep up. By outsourcing IT needs to managed service providers, financial service providers can focus on the needs of their clients and put trust in IT experts without sacrificing security and cost-efficiency.

3 concerns around managed services in healthcare

Karen BurtonGuest author: Karen Burton, Healthcare Business Development Manager

Medical records and healthcare information are among the most sensitive data in the IT world, so it’s comes as no surprise that healthcare organizations are hesitant to outsource technology services. As the benefits of moving to a cloud-based infrastructure become more and more clear, IT leaders in healthcare are weighing their options and exploring outsourcing opportunities. Here are three important pieces to consider when shopping for managed services:

1. Internal security threats

The buzz surrounding the security of healthcare information is usually linked to external leaks – but the reality is that a security breech has the same potential to occur internally. It’s critical to know who has access to sensitive data. When doing research, know which questions to ask.

  • Which employees can access private information?
  • What type of screening process have employees gone through?
  • How have employees been deemed trustworthy to access sensitive data?
Shutterstock/Oleksiy Mark 1

Shutterstock/Oleksiy Mark 1

2. Disaster recovery plans

All organizations’ data bases – regardless of the sensitivity of the data – should have some type of security measures in place. For healthcare organizations, it goes beyond initial security. Be proactive and learn the ins and outs of back up plans.

  • How are back up data bases accessed?
  • Can it be done securely with minimal risk?
  • How is the security plan tested – and how often?

3. Other companies using the same services

When using an outsourced company for cloud services, your data may be housed with additional companies’ data – which might open up the risk of spreading malware. Learn as much as you can about how other clients manage their IT security.

  • What precautions are taken to ensure malware isn’t spread among clients?
  • Are other clients properly trained on best practices for security?

Patients trust the organizations from which they obtain medical services. Healthcare organizations need to be able to trust their IT service providers.

What other information should organizations consider before partnering with an IT service provider?

The Information Management Crisis: Are You Ready?

Gartner predicts that one third of Fortune 100 companies will be facing an information management crisis by 2017 due to the large amounts of unmanaged data that has been acquired. Within the walls of these large corporations, data has been gathered and stored with minimal security and data management processes, as well as the technology and hardware to support it.

artSilense/Bigstock

artSilense/Bigstock

Corporations need to begin managing the data and what they are doing with it instead of just maintaining it. An Enterprise Information Management (EIM) discipline needs to be built and managed in order for the big data gathering to continue. The power a well-managed, information-sharing system can provide is endless.

Hype or Ripe:  Going forward, will these large organizations be able to continue gather and store the data at the rate, or be able to trust the data quality?

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