Amid the pandemic, using trust to fight shadow IT

With most workers scattered at home and trying to come up with their own ad-hoc IT workarounds, there’s an easy way for IT shops to build trust: communicate.

A man using a mobile phone in shadow against a bright wall
Warren Wong (CC0)

Shadow IT, where workers sometimes go rogue in their efforts to solve business problems, can create challenges – and opportunities – for companies in the best of times. With the COVID-19 pandemic still unfolding, these are not the best of times. With most employees and executives still working from home, the big issue for administrators and IT pros still centers on how to make things work in today’s trying circumstances.

Every major platform has controls IT can use, some of them as blunt as a hammer and others that offer surgical precision. At either end of that spectrum lie two common questions: How restrictive does IT need to be and is there a way to fully communicate areas of risk while making business more secure.

Communication is critical if the IT and business sides of a company are to work together cohesively, regardless of where people are physically working. So, I’m not going to simply list the variety EMM and UEM features available across each and every platform. Instead, I want to focus on building the critical trust  relationship that’s key to success – not the least of which is to make IT look less punitive.

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