Organizations of all sizes, industries and regions report increasing complexity within the data center. Symantec's (News - Alert) 2012 State of the Data Center Survey reveals that the effects of growing data center complexity are far reaching. The most commonly mentioned impact is higher costs, with nearly half of the organizations citing it as an effect of complexity. Other impacts include reduced agility, longer lead times for storage migration and provisioning storage, security breaches, and downtime.
The results are based on responses from 2,453 IT professionals at organizations in 34 countries. Respondents included senior IT staff focused on operations and tactical functions, as well as staff members focused on planning and IT management.
According to the survey, data center complexity impacts all areas of computing, most notably security and infrastructure, as well as disaster recovery, storage and compliance. Respondents rated complexity across all areas fairly evenly, with security topping the list. Key drivers of data center complexity include the growth of strategic IT trends such as mobile computing, server virtualization, and public cloud.
"As today's businesses generate more information and introduce new technologies into the data center, these changes can either act as a sail to catch the wind and accelerate growth, or an anchor holding organizations back," Brian Dye, vice president, Information Intelligence Group, Symantec Corp said in a statement.
While the cause of data center complexity stems from a variety of factors, respondents identify implementing an information governance strategy as the main initiative organizations are taking to address data center growing pains. The State of the Data Center findings emphasize the importance of taking steps to intelligently manage organizational resources to rein in operational costs and control information growth.
According to the survey, organizations are implementing several measures to reduce complexity, including training, standardization, centralization, virtualization, and increased budgets.
Some of the recommendations that IT can try to mitigate the effects of data center complexity are indicated as; establish C-level ownership of information governance, start with high-ROI projects like data loss prevention, archiving and eDiscovery to preserve critical information, understand the business services that IT is providing and all of the dependencies to reduce downtime and miscommunications, understanding of IT assets, how they are being consumed, and by whom - this will help cut costs and risk, reduce the number of backup applications to meet recovery SLAs and reduce capital expenses, operating expenses and training costs, deploy de-duplication everywhere to help address the information explosion and reduce the rising costs associated with backing up data, use appliances to simplify backup and recovery operations across physical and virtual machines.
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Edited by Brooke Neuman