The expeditious demands of today's business environment often outpaces CIOs who run IT operations on legacy systems. Many bemoan the fact that with the speed at which enterprises operate today, they are increasingly being left out of IT decision making as more business units begin to operate in shadow IT.

Specifically, CIOs are not being consulted when their counterparts decide to adopt cloud computing solutions. The reason for kicking them out of the company board room, according to Forbes contributors JP Blaho and Janel Ryan, is that IT is alluded to as the "department of slow."

Picking up the pace with cloud computing
Having a reliable and modern IT infrastructure is vital to supporting successful business innovation and growth. CIOs who continue to run mission-critical business applications and store essential company data on legacy systems will have a hard time ever getting back up to speed.

In order to counter this IT deficiency, CIOs must research and look at the various cloud computing solutions that are available in a swiftly growing marketplace. Becoming an expert on cloud's benefits and competitive advantages will help CIOs make decisions that improve the way their IT departments impact business outcomes and goals.

Leveraging IaaS cloud to align IT and businesses
Solutions such as IaaS cloud providers can assist IT staff in constructing valuable and smarter decisions by making crucial business information readily available through advanced infrastructure. Additionally, enterprise IaaS cloud solutions allow CIOs to regain control of IT decision making.

Some providers, like PeakColo, enable businesses and CIOs to white label their service and quickly build and improve applications and boost efficiency through supplied IT infrastructure. The tech-savvy workforce – equipped with the latest technology – represents a monumental challenge to CIOs who have not yet adopted cloud solutions in order to cope with an increasingly complex work environment. By embracing the IaaS cloud, CIOs can steer employees in a direction that leads to IT alignment.

"What IT can do is guide those users towards pre-tested and pre-qualified applications based upon business needs," according to the source. "What IT needs to do is evolve into a consulting house."

Reestablishing the role of IT
CIOs are no longer just managers of the company's data center infrastructure; rather, they are becoming the brokers of services that are explicitly tied to the business, according to Robert Stroud, a contributor to Enterprise Innovation. IaaS cloud providers empower IT to focus on developing applications and how they're implemented to positively impact business decisions. In addition, these solutions automatically take over routine tasks including backup, storage and security. With more efficient infrastructure on their side, CIOs can get back in the company board room and provide invaluable input to help make more strategic enterprise decisions.

"Organizations that don't adapt to these technology shifts quickly are falling behind, and those that embrace these new technology models find themselves with a seat at the table when discussing new strategic capabilities and business growth," Stroud wrote.