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Tuesday, 30 August 2016

New EIU study finds increased IT decentralisation is challenging enterprise operations


  • According to an EIU survey, over 40% of IT executives believe that technology decisions are being decentralised, with increasing control taken by business users
  • Business users say the primary reason is that new technologies require business knowledge and expertise (28%)
  • 60% of IT executives  believe decentralisation challenges enterprise collaboration
  • 64% believe it has increased total technology costs
  • And 66% believe it increases the vulnerability of the firm to cyber-attacks

A new report published today (August 30th 2016) by The Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) analyses the extent to which business users are taking control of IT decision-making and assets and the impact on operations complexity. The report finds that where business users are doing so, the resulting fragmentation of technology is creating complexity and duplication, thereby increasing the complexity of operations and vulnerability to cyber-risk.

The IT archipelago, the decentralisation of enterprise technology, sponsored by VMware, is based on global surveys of 300 IT executives and 300 senior business users of technology. The study first analyses the extent and causes of decentralisation. It then examines the differing perspectives of IT executives and business users on the root causes of this emerging trend. Finally, it analyses the consequences for the firm’s operations, including impact on costs, operations and vulnerability to cyber-attack.

West Coghlan, the editor of the report, said:

“IT executives believe that their inability to respond quickly to business users’ needs is the primary driver of decentralisation.  Business users say the most important reason is that domain expertise is required to make technology decisions that affect their business. The consequence of both of these factors is an emerging complexity that is having a real impact on operations and vulnerability to cyber-attack.  With three out of four business users authorising their own devices, and approximately half building their own apps and cloud networks, we can only expect these challenges to grow.”

To download an Executive Summary of the report, click here


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Mathew Hanratty, corporate communications manager

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West Coghlan, senior editor

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Notes to editors

About The Economist Intelligence Unit

The Economist Intelligence Unit is the world leader in global business intelligence. It is the business-to-business arm of The Economist Group, which publishes The Economist newspaper. The Economist Intelligence Unit helps executives make better decisions by providing timely, reliable and impartial analysis on worldwide market trends and business strategies. More information can be found at www.eiu.com or www.twitter.com/theeiu.


For further information from VMware, please contact:

Alex Goldsmith, director – business unit and technology PR

650 427-2439

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