Management @en

Integrating Social Media, SaaS and mobility solutions need an internal shift

Integrating Social Media means to open the company and the philosophy of the company at first. The company must allow its employees to use Social Media. Next is to close the security hole when the staff is using Social Media. For example employees can communicate important business information over the web. It’s the same with SaaS or cloud solutions like Dropbox. Employees are able to copy the sensitive data into a Google Docs document or upload it to Dropbox.

Another problem is the shadow IT SaaS can bring into the company. With just the use of a credit card employees are able to use new SaaS or other cloud solutions and use them parallel to the existing IT when they do not get what they expect from the IT-department. It’s the same with mobile devices. Bring your own device is a great idea and on one hand it can save money regarding hardware costs. But a company should ask if it wants that a employee stored the sensitive business data – and if it’s just email – on the hybrid (privat/business) mobile device. The problem is that there is a need for a mobile management system for the devices to control the apps etc. or better virtualization of mobile devices. On the other hand the private data of the employee is stored on the device, like private emails, maybe documents, photos, videos etc. Especially in Germany there is an issue with data privacy laws.

The main challenge integrating SaaS into existing operations is to synchronize the data between different SaaS solutions. It’s the same situation we faced with in early times with the isolated applications. There is a need for a middleware which integrates the cloud services. So at first it seems to be very easy to use SaaS. Create an account, create users, import the data, start to work. For startups or small companies this way works. But if you take a look on mid-sized or big companies the challenges are big.

Actually SaaS is the best way to integrate mobile and Social Media solutions in the existing operations of a company. Today it’s the easiest way to get access from any device and any place to the data, applications and get in touch with people and customers. The problem for the mobile use of SaaS are still the unstable mobile internet connections.

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By Rene Buest

Rene Buest is Gartner Analyst covering Infrastructure Services & Digital Operations. Prior to that he was Director of Technology Research at Arago, Senior Analyst and Cloud Practice Lead at Crisp Research, Principal Analyst at New Age Disruption and member of the worldwide Gigaom Research Analyst Network. Rene is considered as top cloud computing analyst in Germany and one of the worldwide top analysts in this area. In addition, he is one of the world’s top cloud computing influencers and belongs to the top 100 cloud computing experts on Twitter and Google+. Since the mid-90s he is focused on the strategic use of information technology in businesses and the IT impact on our society as well as disruptive technologies.

Rene Buest is the author of numerous professional technology articles. He regularly writes for well-known IT publications like Computerwoche, CIO Magazin, LANline as well as and is cited in German and international media – including New York Times, Forbes Magazin, Handelsblatt, Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, Wirtschaftswoche, Computerwoche, CIO, Manager Magazin and Harvard Business Manager. Furthermore Rene Buest is speaker and participant of experts rounds. He is founder of and writes about cloud computing, IT infrastructure, technologies, management and strategies. He holds a diploma in computer engineering from the Hochschule Bremen (Dipl.-Informatiker (FH)) as well as a M.Sc. in IT-Management and Information Systems from the FHDW Paderborn.

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