Helen Tang is worldwide director of data center transformation solutions at HP, focused on helping customers transform their data centers into strategic assets that support business growth and innovation.
With today’s data centers approaching the limits of their infrastructure and energy and space resources, CIOs are faced with ever-changing business demands, widespread resources, and the need to support business growth. Given these dynamics, how can you not only succeed in the present but also better prepare yourself for the future?
Before your infrastructure reaches its breaking point, consider investing in data center transformation. Data center transformation closely aligns technology with business goals and processes, increasing efficiency and quality of service while removing technology-related barriers to business growth. For example, technologies such as virtualization often result in reduced real estate requirements and energy needs, lowering operational costs across the organization. When it’s time to consider data center transformation, the signs are unmistakable. Here are three to look for:
1. Increased Complexity
Within the data center, servers, storage and networks proliferate as lines of business are added and as new business services are provided. In turn, your data center’s infrastructure steadily grows more complex. Ultimately, you may be managing multiple, redundant data centers and infrastructure, creating operational inefficiencies and dragging down essential applications. Mergers or acquisitions only add a layer of complexity. Initiatives such as consolidation and virtualization will help mitigate risk and eliminate redundancy as you handle data across disparate and complex environments.
2. Rising Energy and Operational Costs
Aging data centers and infrastructure have considerable energy requirements and unnecessary operational costs, imposing capacity limits that affect uptime and flexibility. Poorly managed real estate and underutilized technology also lead to inefficiencies and high energy costs. Organizations need integrated approaches to control and reduce energy usage in real-time in order to improve efficiency under any workload, extending the capacity of existing facilities. Power monitoring and reduction technologies will optimize data center space and increase energy efficiency. This results in reduced operating costs while maintaining flexibility to respond to shifting business demands.
3. Limited Capacity
As infrastructure technologies are continually added to the data center, physical capacity is stretched to its limit and performance issues can arise. Additionally, more resources are spent on management and maintenance instead of supporting innovation and growth. This can jeopardize the ability to meet new business demands and successfully perform in a competitive environment. Data center transformation leverages consolidation, virtualization and a converged infrastructure to reduce an organization’s hardware foot print and create a more efficient environment by lowering space requirements.
Unlike taking the traditional approach, which focuses on each project singularly and serially, the transformational approach builds an effective next-generation data center through integrated projects over time. Step by step, projects achieve their own specific objectives while helping reduce costs, mitigate risks and support business growth and innovation. The transformational approach considers the long-term success of your data center, fostering continual improvement and yielding much higher returns.
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