We have a [cloud] app for that...

InformationWeek’s Michael Biddick expresses the frustrations of many in modern IT trying to navigate a complex environment that often includes a mix of on-premise software and cloud applications. In the article, Biddick offers a clear explanation about how we got to this point: Enterprises’ struggle to successfully integrate on-premise and cloud apps is creating disconnected silos, leaving behind a slew of management issues in its wake.

Being Okta, we’d note that one of the six problem areas IT leaders talk about in the article revolves around Identity and access – the ability to rapidly verify who’s accessing your systems is mandatory for security and compliance.

Ahem, we have a [cloud] app for that.

The article though, also talks about other pain areas, especially as users access more apps across more devices. Today, not everything is neatly managed behind a corporate firewall, yet IT shouldn’t accept inadequate integration and control.

Biddick offers several tips for enterprises trying to integrate their cloud and on-premise apps, from selecting cloud apps with broad adoption to sussing out how well potential SaaS vendors integrate with outside applications. We definitely agree with a key point, “When exploring cloud brokers, look for those that offer a wide variety of out-of-the- box adapters and connectors; the more vari-ety, the better the company’s commitment to a breadth of support.”

Today’s hybrid cloud & on-premise environment, complicated further by the influx of users’ mobile devices, certainly challenges modern IT, which now must think differently about management. But enterprises can’t simply throw up their hands and fold, forgetting the reason they turned to the cloud in the first place.

By the way, Biddick uses the term “cloud services brokers” – a profile and market area that some of our favorite analysts Daryl Plummer and Benoit Lheureux have been writing about for two years now. In their report, “A Logical Reference Model for Cloud Services Brokerage (October, 2010, Daryl C. Plummer and Benoit J. Lheureux), they talk about their definition of cloud services brokers – basically that they offer value-added capabilities on top of original cloud services and simplify cloud usage in the enterprise.