Can fast IT really be robust?

IT leaders say Hybrid IT is the future (but they want more education)

It’s arguably one of the biggest questions being posed by CIOs and IT managers right now.

Organisations want to reap the benefits of new digital technologies, but at the same time want to insulate (and protect) themselves from risk.

We dropped into a breakout session at this year’s Fujitsu World Tour in London where Fujitsu’s Mark Philips and David Rosewell aimed to tackle this issue.

They opened up the talk with a quote from racing driver Mario Andretti:

mario andretti fast it quote

“If everything seems under control, you’re not going fast enough.”

Driving very, very fast (and often beyond your limits) will push you to win. But with this comes the risk of crashing – and this certainly isn’t the way you would want to run your own IT systems.

Instead, in the age of digital transformation, it’s about balancing an element of risk and experimentation (from fast IT) with your own robust systems. This is what we would describe as the Hybrid IT model.

So how does this all come to life? Mark and David talked us through some real-life examples.

In finance, the Japanese bank Nanto needed to develop a smartphone-agnostic app to interact with their customers – while at the same time adhere to the country’s strict data regulations.

Fujitsu worked with the bank, using the K5 cloud platform, which was used to collect and interpret customer data. It was built in such a way that it conformed with regulations.

The app is now used by a million user but, because of the use of fast IT, time to market was reduced by 80% and development costs cut by 70%. This really was a combination of fast and robust IT.

Another example was Fujitsu’s recent development of a new flooding warning system for the Environment Agency. This started out as a text message alert service, but increasingly they discovered people wanted deeper interactions with this platform, particularly through social media.

So by using fast IT, Fujitsu and the agency could develop proof of concepts, and they were able to create new iterations of the app over time while still keeping robust systems running in the background.

Fast IT can be a materially good thing in enhancing innovation and pushing new boundaries for an organisation. But by using a Hybrid IT approach, risk can be isolated, allowing an organisation to test the market, and protecting it from failure.

In order to do this, you need a cloud platform that enables you to manage this level of complexity. This way an organisation can deliver the best of both worlds.

So to answer the title of this story – can fast IT really be robust? Yes, it can. By using Hybrid IT, and managed through a platform (such as K5), you can activate the benefits of fast IT while still protecting yourself with robust systems.

It is Hybrid IT that glues all of this together.

Watch again: here’s when we caught up with Mark Phillips at Fujitsu’s World Tour on Periscope.

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