Rogue IT is rife but that’s OK say IT managers

About to be released to trade press and on the Blue Prism website, since readers of this blog contributed to the survey (thank you), here is an advance copy of the press release.

Rogue IT: Survey highlights rogue users in 67% of organisations. 

Budget and resource constraints and a focus on strategic projects inevitably lead to pockets of rogue behaviour.

A strong governance model where collaboration between IT and the business is encouraged would help control rogue IT behaviour according to 75% of IT respondents in a recent survey conducted by robotic integration company, Blue Prism.  The survey highlighted that almost seven out of 10 (67%) organisations see elements of rogue IT behaviour from business users as a direct result of IT department budget and resource constraints and a necessary IT focus on strategic rather than tactical projects.

Despite the traditionally held view that all IT departments hold a dim view of rogue behaviour by users, the survey highlighted that IT fully understands why pockets of rogue behaviour exist, yet is pragmatic when asked for the best way of dealing with it – suggesting governance (75%) rather than introducing measures to eradicate it (10%).

So why does rogue behaviour exist in organisations? IT has the unenviable task of managing strategic, business critical projects while at the same time helping the business user with tactical change requests, so this mismatch between user expectations and IT focus is perhaps the answer.  Over 52% reported that working on strategic projects was the main focus for their department with 40% saying that delivering day to day business change requests was their priority.  The survey also highlighted that users expect projects to be delivered to ever shorter deadlines, with 86% of IT respondents believing this to be the case.

However, satisfying all business needs is often not possible given the strategic focus of IT teams versus the volume of change requests required by the business.  More than 71% of respondents cited IT department resource constraints as the reason why they are not able to satisfy all requests from the business followed by 67% of respondents who believed that IT department budget constraints were the key factor.

Of those surveyed however, 52% believed that they are able to satisfy over 75% of change requests and only 10% of respondents felt that they were able to manage fewer than 25% of requests.

Commenting on the survey findings Alastair Bathgate, Managing Director of Blue Prism said “The perennial problem in enterprise IT is how to manage the day to day demands of the business and business users within the confines of departmental budget and resource constraints and the pressure to deliver high level strategic projects. In this environment it is tough to find the budgets and resources necessary to address the raft of small changes that business users want.  It’s good to see the IT community acknowledge that users should be given the power to work on their own solutions, although there is a salutary warning from the survey that this should be done with tools approved by IT under an appropriate governance model.”

The survey also explored the question “What do you consider to be Rogue IT?” The following table provides this summary. 

    % of respondents
1 Vendor application installed without IT knowledge 100
2 Installing personal software 83
3 Locally written scripts in VB or other language 56
4 Local Access databases 50
5 Complex Excel spreadsheets 39
6 Using SaaS solutions like apps 39
7 Macros in Word/Excel etc 28
8 Terminal emulator software macros 28
9 Other 11

2 Responses to “Rogue IT is rife but that’s OK say IT managers”

  1. Ciaran’s Random Writings » Blog Archive » 20 Years of Software Development Says:

    […] current one. Other examples might be Coghead or RSSBus. Even spreadsheets fit the bill, as does the IT department’s nightmare, MS […]

  2. » Blog Archive » Are the young more rogue? Says:

    […] I just did an interview with Business Week.  The thrust of the article was around the frustration of business users and the propensity for them to find their own solutions, bypassing IT and downloading their own software and services.  Sounds a bit like rogue behaviour? […]

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