How will the cloud change IT? Look at Microsoft

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Microsoft is planning a global sales reorganization to better focus on selling cloud software, according to Microsoft insiders. This comes as no surprise, considering that Microsoft did the same for its ailing phone business last year.

What does this mean? Well, cloud in, software out—at least from the Microsoft business standpoint. However, count on Microsoft soaking you for more operating system and office automation money for years to come. So, that’s still a thing.

What does this mean to you, the non-cloud or software provider? This is a good use case for what the cloud is likely to do to your IT shop in the next two years. As cloud becomes more of a common enterprise platform, a few things will become apparent, including:

  • Those who work in the enterprise data center will get pink slips at some point in the next few years. The data centers that are owned and operated by enterprises are quickly becoming cost centers that boards of directors are no longer willing to fund. Either move to the cloud or move to a managed service provider. Enterprises have been exiting the data center business for the past several years, and the cloud will only accelerate that.
  • For that matter, anyone associated with the procurement of hardware and software will get the heave-ho as well. These are typically large layers of middle management who have been VPs of saying “no” for the past 20 years as enterprise lines of business attempted to set up systems for much-needed automation.
  • Executives focused on the “traditional” systems will also find themselves out the door. Although some will attempt to reinvent themselves as cloud knowledgeable, most were pushing back hard against the use of cloud just a few years ago. I talk to executives every day who I think must be alien clones based on their quick change of attitude about cloud. Career survival, I guess.

It will be interesting to see how the cloud changes the landscape of IT, including the jobs needed and not needed. Indeed, this will likely be the most dramatic change we’ve experienced in the past 30 years of technology evolving.

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