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Bring Your Own Service: How IT can deliver value in a BYOS world




By Félix Fernández


Félix Fernández is a CTO with HP Software Professional Services covering ITSM, PPM and SIAM.


As the use of cloud services expands in the enterprise, more IT departments are having to grapple with the next wave in the consumerization of IT: Bring Your Own Service, or BYOS.


In some ways, the rise of BYOS is not surprising. After all, this trend is the next step after BYOD—the business users who bring their own smartphones and tablets to work are using those devices to connect to third-party cloud services. And on an organizational level, we’re seeing lines of business drive an increasing share of the overall technology spend. LOBs are selecting cloud suppliers of software as a service, and oftentimes IT simply isn’t involved. According to analysts this “shadow IT” will represent 35% of the technology spending by 2015.


But as BYOS becomes more widespread, the implications for IT become more significant. The services that fall under BYOS are increasingly complex—extending to the business application level. And although LOBs may feel that BYOS gives them greater speed and agility, there are tradeoffs that can negatively affect the business. For instance, if IT doesn’t know about a business service in use, it’s not going to be able to manage:

  • Necessary network bandwidth
  • Compliance
  • Business data
  • Security

Engaging with BYOS

Just as IT had to deal with BYOD and come up with policies and guidelines, we’re seeing our customers start to deal with BYOS. And just as with BYOD, IT has to understand how not to be the stopping point. Instead, how can IT help the business bring those services to their users in a way that’s

  •  faster
  • cheaper
  • easier to plug and unplug

To effectively engage with BYOS, IT needs to take a two-pronged approach.


  1. Act as a service broker. IT can bring great value to the business by offering an Amazon-like model of services. Some of these services may be internal, some external. IT should be looking at different service options and bring them to end users.
  2. Offer a single-portal service catalog. A single portal service catalog makes things much easier for end users. The catalog then becomes something like an app store. IT then controls what is consumed as well as establishing relationships with the service providers.


Integrating complex services into BYOS  

SaaS services are easier to plug in to a service catalog. But in a full catalog you will have more complex services, like outsourcing of your infrastructure or workplace management. Your catalog will ultimately contain a mix of cloud or SaaS services as well as legacy outsourcing services.


IT plays an important role particularly when it comes to integrating external services. Typically, the cost of managing external suppliers is between 3% and 10% of the total contract value –depending on the complexity of the contract. So it is not efficient for the business to deal with contracts, support, licenses, requests, etc. It’s much more cost-effective for IT to manage this type of service because they have the experience and in addition can manage for compliance, security, SLAs and so on.


In most cases with BYOS, the business is going outside IT because IT is too slow. But IT is going to be more cost effective at managing these services than the business is. And this is where IT can offer real value, becoming an advisor to the business and an enabler of innovation. To learn more, see the Frost & Sullivan report, The New IT, Managing and Delivering Services in a MultiVendor Environment (registration required). 



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