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Shadow Provisions Occur in the IT Department Too

Shadow IT is everywhere. Every department seemingly creates shadow IT, and sometimes this is even committed by the IT department themselves. In a post at his blog, Joe the IT Guy explains just how long a shadow can be cast.

Making Light of It

So what precisely is shadow IT? According to Joe, shadow IT is “the introduction and use of IT in an organization with little or no involvement or support from the IT department.” Unfortunately, most people in the IT industry associate this process as a negative. In reality, shadow IT is a reflection that technology is an important aspect of everyday life.

Those in other departments too often take shadow IT for granted, because they see IT as a commodity rather than the collection of specialists that they truly are. Everyone constantly uses their personal mobile devices, and consequently do not see the technical side of IT as differentiated from their everyday lives.

Stemming from a conversation with a colleague, Joe illustrates the creation of a shadow IT process by the IT department. The IT department sought to see how well they were doing their job, so they created a survey that would question those in the organization that utilized IT services. They could and probably should have contacted their in-house marketing experts to build it, people who would have used their specialized skills to design a survey for them that would give them the information they requested. Instead, they obtained a simple, off-the-shelf survey program to get the job done.

This was not necessarily a “bad” move, but it resulted in naïve and incomplete survey results. Ultimately, “shadow marketing” is no less wicked or potentially annoying than shadow IT. In this case, IT needs to understand the basics of market research in order to better do their job and vice versa.

Shadow provisions in general are very easily accidentally created, but having exceptional subject matter experts can help to remedy this. You can read the original post here: http://www.joetheitguy.com/2016/03/29/is-your-it-in-the-shadows/

About Danielle Koehler

Danielle is a staff writer for CAI's Accelerating IT Success. She has degrees in English and human resource management from Shippensburg University.

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