By Joe Kim, SolarWinds Chief Technology Officer


This is evident from two surveys we conducted last year. First, we asked more than 800 employed, non-IT adult end-users in North America a series of questions about how they use technology at work, and the types of technologies being used within their organizations. We also asked more than 200 IT professionals to give their impressions on these end-users’ expectations. Here’s a sample of what we found:


Users are taking IT everywhere. Forty-seven percent of end-user respondents said they connect more electronic devices, whether personally or company-owned, to their employers’ networks than they did 10 years ago. In fact, they connect an average of three more devices than they did a decade ago, two of which they own themselves.


The cloud has taken IT outside the agency. Most organizations allow some form of cloud-based applications, such as Google® Drive or Dropbox®, and 53 percent of respondents said they use these applications at work. Forty-nine percent said they regularly use work-related applications outside the office, on either personally or company-owned devices. Our survey also found that end-users will occasionally use non-IT-sanctioned cloud applications, such as iTunes® or something similar, while at work.


IT professionals must manage technology that may be outside their comfort zones. They must be versed in cloud-driven applications, mobile devices, open source software, and, increasingly, hybrid IT environments that incorporate aspects of on-premises and outsourced components. They must also continually be aware of and monitor the security risks that these solutions – and the actions of end- users – can present, adding one more layer of complexity to an already intricate set of concerns.


Eighty-seven percent of end-user respondents said they expect their organizations’ IT professionals to help ensure the performance of the cloud-based applications they use at work. Further, 68 percent blamed their IT professionals if these applications did not work correctly (“Dropbox isn’t working! Someone call IT!”).


According to the IT is Everywhere survey, 62 percent of IT professional respondents felt that the expectation to support users’ personally-owned devices on their networks is significantly greater than it was 10 years ago. Meanwhile, 64 percent of IT professionals said that end-users expect the same time to resolution for issues with both cloud-based and local applications. The inference is that users do not draw a distinction between cloud and on-premises infrastructures, despite the many differences between the two, and the fact that hybrid IT operations can be exceedingly complex and difficult to manage.


All of this is to say that IT is indeed everywhere. It’s in our offices and homes. It’s on our desktops and smartphones. It’s onsite and in the cloud.


IT professionals are constantly on deck to help ensure always-on availability and optimal performance, regardless of device, platform, application, or infrastructure. The end-users don’t care, as long as things are working.


Find the full article on GovLoop.