Monday, October 19, 2015

Article Alert: The CIO Perspective on IT Complexity

A new article alert by Roger Sessions

Article Name: The IT Complexity Challenge: A Trustmarque study into the state of IT complexity from the CIOs’ perspective.
Authors: None given.
Publisher: Trustmarque
Date of Release: October 2015
Registration requirements:  Nominal registration information required.

Main Points of Article

IT Complexity is a huge challenge for most CIOs. 93% of CIO’s believe that IT complexity has increased and 66% believe that the cloud has increased complexity, more than for any other cited factor. This is especially interesting given that the cloud was touted as way of simplifying IT.

Companies are now recognizing the problems complexity causes. (“Organizations are craving simplicity.”) CIOs don’t know how to deal with IT complexity (“For CIOs, the end result... is confusion over which technologies and services will actually help them simplify their IT landscape.”) But despite the confusion about how to simplify IT, 79% of CIOs think that simplifying IT is a priority.

IT complexity is causing many problems that directly impact the business. IT complexity is a major contributor to security problems with almost all CIOs (87%) agreeing that IT security is a challenge. IT complexity also makes it difficult to respond to the business needs with almost all CIOs (89%) agreeing that simplifying IT is at odds with driving innovation

IT simplification is not a luxury, it is a necessity. But it is a necessity few CIOs are equipped to deliver. 80% believe their organizations lack the in-house skills needed to deliver projects at the speed required. The article concludes “What the modern CIO needs is to simplify the IT at their disposal, yet this is a huge challenge for IT departments to do it all on their own.”

My complements

All in all, this is a well written article that makes clear the dual points that while CIOs understand they have a problem with IT complexity, they have little idea what to do about it.

I also agree that IT complexity causes security problems and makes responding to business needs difficult. I would add to these two problems a host of others, including reliability and cost of delivery. I also agree that few CIOs are equipped to respond to the challenges of IT complexity.

Most CIOs will benefit from reading this article, if only to understand that they are not the only ones struggling with the problem of IT complexity.

My criticisms

The article gives no guidance as to how to respond to the problem of IT complexity other than to engage Trustmarque and there is no information as to how Trustmarque will help organizations achieve IT simplification.


Roger Sessions has no interest, financial or otherwise, in the article discussed above. The article was chosen based solely on his judgement as to the value of the article to his readers.

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This article alert is by Roger Sessions, probably the leading expert on IT complexity. Our approach to IT simplification is our IT Simplification Initiative (ITSI). You can read about ITSI at

The road to IT Simplification begins with a single ITSI step.

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