For example, by automating and integrating its supply
chain, a manufacturing company can reduce its inventories
and order-processing time, and scale down the number of
warehousing facilities. As a result, it will be able to deliver its
products faster and at a lower cost. By consolidating its data
centers and leveraging the latest virtualization technologies,
a data processing company can cut its IT infrastructure costs
by as much as half in a relatively short period of time.
Popular initiatives include virtualization, cloud computing,
software as a service, outsourcing, and social interaction
Virtualization software technologies enable users to run
multiple operating systems on the same hardware machine.
This helps to optimize usage of existing servers, extend
their useful life, and significantly reduce their number, thus
shrinking the number of machines and data centers.
Cloud computing refers to Internet services and Web-based
applications that run “on demand” over the Internet, rather
than over a dedicated, in-house hardware infrastructure.
In a cloud-computing environment, companies reduce
expenditures by paying for some IT resources via a usage-
based model. Cloud computing encompasses various types
of solutions, from software-as-a-service applications to
infrastructure-as-a-service solutions for shared storage and
SaaS has gained traction as an alternative to traditional
software applications. The number of SaaS specialists
has grown rapidly, and all major software vendors have
made SaaS offerings part of their portfolio. SaaS has made
inroads in multiple business areas, including customer
relationship management, business intelligence, treasury
and cash management, expense management, human
resources management, and more. By shifting from in-
house applications to SaaS applications, companies reduce
the demands on their in-house hardware infrastructure and
administration, accelerate adoption of new technologies,
reduce implementation costs, and increase flexibility.
Outsourcing has become a prominent fact in both IT and