An inconsistency exists between actual cloud adoption rates and the viewpoints and direct actions of those responsible for corporate information technology operations. On the one hand, information technology (IT) leaders generally believe the cloud more easily enables the implementation and management of technology services, from web and mobile application development to on-demand computing and storage. These leaders also appreciate the cloud’s consumption-based pricing model over their current capital-intensive cost structures.
Transitioning an IT operation to the cloud is expensive and risky. The transition, in turn, adds complexity to the overall support model. And, until the transition is complete, recurring costs actually go up. As if additional costs, increasing risk, and added complexity were not enough, deciding where to start is perplexing. Furthermore, a cloud transition can be disruptive and requires structured risk planning that must take into account the appropriate pace of change for a particular company.
Dr. Ed Mahon Bio
Edward G. Mahon is responsible for the enterprise-wide architecture and operations of the information technology systems in place at Kent State University, as well as the overall vision for the university's information technology environment in the future. Ed is responsible for developing and executing an enterprise information technology strategy that supports the university’s strategic goals.
Further insight into Information Services’ strategies can be found in the Information Services Strategic Plan, and the Cloud Strategy.
In order to drive continuous improvement and innovation, Ed and his team have created the following set of questions to assess Information Services’ technology strategy:
- How will developing technologies like social networking, mobile explosion, the cloud, IT self-service, and predictive analytics change the higher education landscape and upset business as usual practices?
- Where will new threats to secure institutional data come from and how do we continue to maintain a secure networking environment?
- In an environment of big data, how do we separate information from technology to anticipate student and university needs and trends?
- Can we make strategic investments in technology that allow the tool of technology to transform business practices, enable research innovations, and accelerate technology exploitation?
- What technologies and structures are we lacking at Kent that are preventing us from reaching our online and technology objectives?
- What partnerships, both internal and external, can we develop further or create that enhance our ability to reach university strategic goals concerning technology?
- How do we develop urgency schemes that allow us to determine which technology areas or advancements deserve high university priority, attention, and resources?
With experience in data communications and information technology and services, Ed continues to place emphasis on research and continuous learning. Currently, Ed is focused on integrating innovative technologies such as the cloud into Kent State’s service delivery model, as well as maintaining a high quality of service in all initiatives. Ed has also made a point over the past three years to share his knowledge and experiences with the student body by volunteering as an adjunct professor, teaching the graduate course “Technology Management in Knowledge Organization and Global Technology Strategy,” as well as serving recently as a Fulbright Scholar Mentor.
He serves on several advisory bodies, including both institutional and national organizations:
- The Health Informatics Advisory Council (Kent State University)
- The Knowledge Management Advisory Board (Kent State University)
- The Center for Corporate and Professional Development Advisory Board (Kent State University)
- The CIO Executive Council Research Advisory Board (RAB)
- Educause, a key association that promotes the intelligent use of information technology in higher education
Recently, Mahon has been honored for his leadership with the following awards:
- Finalist: CIO of the Year – April 2013
Crain’s Cleveland Business
- Winner: CIO 100 Award for Project Innovation – 2009
- Winner: Campus Technology Award for Innovation – 2009
Campus Technology Magazine
Additionally, his recent publications include:
· Tying Up Loose Ends in Transitioning to the Cloud. Educause Review, February 8, 2016.
· Transitioning the Enterprise to the Cloud: A Business Approach. Hudson, Ohio: Cloudworks Publishing Company, November 26, 2015. Print/eBook.
· “Antecedents of organizational engagement: Exploring vision, mood and perceived organizational support with emotional intelligence as a moderator,” Frontiers in Psychology, November 2014.
· "Cloud Sourcing: Consolidate suppliers or go best of breed?," Network World, September, 2013.
· "Ten Best Practices for the Cloud," Network World, June, 2013.
· "Adding a New Service-Delivery Model: The Cloud," Campus Technology Summit, April, 2013.
· "Cloud at Kent State University, Peer Intelligence Study," CIO Executive Council & IDG Enterprise, January 2013.
· “The Cloud as an IT Sourcing Strategy,” Educause Review, July/August 2011.