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Data centre complexity is driving up costs

Jack Loo | Sept. 25, 2012
Symantec’s survey on data centre uncovers effects of data centre complexity.

The increasing complexity in the data centre has brought about issues such as rising costs and longer lead times for storage migration, according to a Symantec survey.

The study, titled 2012 State of the Data Center Survey, is based on responses from 2,453 IT professionals at organisations in 32 countries, including 100 companies from Singapore.

"Data centres are becoming increasingly complex as organisations generate huge volumes of data, deploy strategic technologies such as virtualisation and cloud computing, and embrace mobility within the enterprise," said Tan Yuh Woei, country director, Singapore, Symantec.

The survey found out that there are several factors are driving data centre complexity.  The respondents reported they are dealing with an increasing number of applications that they consider to be business-critical. In Singapore, 69 percent said the number of business-critical applications is increasing.

Other key drivers of data centre complexity include cloud computing (49 percent), software-as-a-service (48 percent), growth in the volume of data (46 percent), mobile computing (44 percent), and storage virtualisation (41 percent).

The survey revealed that the effects of growing data centre complexity are far reaching. The most commonly mentioned impacts are higher costs and longer lead times for storage migration, with nearly half of the organisations citing each as an effect of complexity. Other impacts include security breaches (stated by 42 percent of respondents), longer time to find information (39 percent), reduced agility (39 percent), lost or misplaced data (39 percent), downtime (38 percent), missed SLAs (38 percent), and litigation exposure (37 percent).

"To get the most value out of their investment, businesses will need to overcome these roadblocks by implementing controls such as standardisation or establishing an information governance strategy to keep information from becoming a liability. Otherwise, efforts made to 'modernise' the data centre will be in vain," said Tan.

Main initiative to address woes

The respondents have identified having an information governance strategy as the main initiative to address their data centre woes. In Singapore, 91 percent of organisations are either discussing information governance, or have implemented trials or actual programmes.   

The local organisations locally have several goals with information governance, including matching the value of data (considered important by 58 percent); reduced cost of information management (56 percent), storage (55 percent), and eDiscovery (55 percent).

Symantec has published the following recommendations that it says can help IT departments mitigate the effects of data centre complexity:

1) Establish C-level ownership of information governance. Start with high-ROI projects like data loss prevention, archiving and e-Discovery to preserve critical information, find what you need and delete the rest.

2) Get visibility beyond platforms. Understand the business services that IT is providing and all of the dependencies to reduce downtime and miscommunications.


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