I'm an employee of TechTarget, and one of TechTarget's lines of business is a series of half-day seminars on various topics which we deliver around the world. I'm personally responsible for speaking at our desktop virtualization and modern end user computing seminars (along with Gabe Knuth and Shawn Bass) and our Consumerization of IT seminars (along with Jack Madden).
TechTarget has a delegate recruitment department which is basically a group of folks who sit in Boston and make thousands of phone calls to recruit IT Pros from end-user companies to attend our events. I had a call a few weeks ago with them to discuss our recruitment efforts for our consumerization events, and one of the comments the recruitments made was that "many people we call for the consumerization event say that consumerization isn't a problem for them or that they've already solved consumerization."
When I hear that, I am completely dumbfounded, as I've been spending a significant part of my career writing about and consulting on consumerization for the past five years, and I feel like I don't exactly know how to solve it yet. So I'm curious, for those who have "solved" consumerization, how did you do this? (I recognize that some people might just say they've solved it to get us to stop calling them, but since we've been doing several hundred seminars a year for thirteen years, we already know how to control for that.) But when it comes to consumerization, there is absolutely a large contingent of IT Pros who believe they have solved it. So if that's you, what exactly are you doing? How have you solved it?
I guess we should look at exactly what consumerization is. My personal definition goes something like this:
- Consumerization is the fact that in today's world, end users can basically do whatever they want, and
- Not only is IT powerless to stop them, but
- In most cases, IT doesn't even know it's going on.
I suspect that most of the people who have "solved" consumerization either (1) have a narrow definition of it that they've solved, while not considering the full picture, or (2) are ignorant to what's really going on in their organizations.
The reality is that consumerization is not a product or a trend, rather it's more like a pressure that affects all areas of the business. Properly dealing with consumerization means you have to understand and design proper networks, security, remote access, desktop, application, storage, collaboration mobile and cloud environments as well as understanding the business from the CIO, HR, and legal side of things. It's more that a product—it's a way of providing all IT services.
Maybe the people who have solved consumerization think they have just because they already have a BYO program or because they believe their corporate data solutions are secure and usable? I honestly don't know.
So I'm curious? What have you done to "solve" the consumerization of IT? Do you have any projects that you call "consumerization," or is it just something you think about for all projects nows? Did you make a concerted effort to move to cloud and mobile apps under the guise of consumerization, or is it more than that? Please share... what are you doing in your organization? And is it working?