I see the cloud as a means by which business units will disentangle themselves from internal IT shops, eventually moving to a model where internal IT equates to one primary component, which are high-power IT experts with exemplary communication skills who serve as proxies between the business unit and outsourced IT services. There will be a small shop of these people for each business in broad areas such as development and infrastructure.
People in these groups will be highly skilled in a wide range of IT disciplines and will excel at understanding business requirements and being able to translate them into requests for outsourced services. The reason this model will dominate is because using an internal IT shop is like hiring family members to do work on your house; it’s nice to have family do the work rather than a stranger, but only until things go wrong. Then it’s much, much worse.
Basically, the trend will be for businesses to have the following components:
- Technical consultants that coordinate outsourcing (go-betweens)
- Giant pools of liquid consulting services in Infrastructure, Applications, Security, Development, etc.–mostly based out of the cloud.
In other words, everything will be obfuscated from the business–even more so than it is now. So when the business has a need, they get on the phone and tell their go-between what they want, in business terms. The go-between then translates that request to outsourced services terms and gets things moving.
So instead of business account reps getting with IT and asking/requesting for some sort of service, the go-between will get on the phone with his favorite four outsourced solutions, which are just giant liquid pools of resources, and make them compete for the business. Then the implementation will be:
- 6 CloudServ Servers
- 15 DevNet developers
- 1 UberSecure Security Consultant
…and coordination to get them all working together as an ad-hoc team, which they will be highly familiar with.
The key advantage here is that any issue the go-between has with one of the developers is immediately fixable. One phone call–he’s not on the project anymore. He’s just one instantiation of
$clouddeveloper, just as the servers are instantiations of
This provides the business the most agility. Availability and security concerns are handled by the legal department and insurance, via SLAs. So the cloud becomes this amorphous, liquid mass of instantaneous service across all areas of IT–all with their own security and SLA promises–ready to cater to the businesses out there that need them.
This is where the IT worker comes in. There will be a few basic job roles in this new paradigm:
The local fix-it guy. You work for a contracting company in their
supportdivision. You are an instantiation of
$networkcable. You live in a certain city and thus get “assigned” to local companies as your company wins contracts with local businesses. So there will still be IT staff onsite doing cabling, upgrading desktops, etc., but this will all be handled through outsourced contracts.
The go-between. This is one of the few IT people that actually works directly for the business as an employee. They manage all the outsourcing in tune with business needs. These are very high-level and respected positions–requiring skillsets of consultants, account reps, and executives simultaneously.
The cloud-based consultant. These are the experts in all the various IT fields that travel from place to place doing their trade. They all work for outsourcing companies which are constantly competing to be the primary choice for businesses. Each company will have specializations, but many will be one-stop-shops like we see today.
Anyway, this is all very early-stage thought. I’d love to hear feedback.