Now is the time to consolidate corporate data says Miriam Murphy, senior vice president, enterprise business group at Avnet Technology Solutions EMEA.
As data volumes surge, Miriam believes organisations need to implement a centralised data management system to handle the information economy.
Today’s C-level executives are working hard to deal with the challenges of new trends such as BYOD, Mobile Device Management (MDM) and cloud computing causing an explosion of data. According to IDC, the big data market will reach €11.8bn ($16.1bn) this year. To harness the power of big data, I believe companies need to consider enterprise-wide consolidation to address business demands, including cost efficiency, increasing productivity, security and flexibility. These market needs will lead to the transformation of the data centre which is something partners and resellers need to be aware of so they don’t miss out on growth opportunities.
The consumerisation of IT, increasing numbers of users, more devices and increased mobility are affecting the way companies approach their data centre strategies, with the increasing volume of corporate data pushing the storage environment to a new level. During Q3 2013 the storage market generated 101% more storage capacity than the same quarter in 2012. This ever-increasing capacity of corporate data amount of data needs to be backed up and securely stored, so that it is easily accessible to employees. Because of these trends, companies are searching for storage solutions to meet real life business demands – it’s not simply “one size fits all”. According to Gartner, the importance, role and functionality of the data centre is set to change over the next five years. The questions we as a global value added distributor are asking are: which storage solution will be able to cope with both current and future storage demands? As data volume is only going to grow, which solution can most effectively solve key business demands?
Today, IT departments are being asked to do more with less, increasing availability and responsiveness while cutting costs. However, according to recent research from KPMG, 42% of executives admit that integrating data technology into existing systems and/or business models is their greatest challenge. On speaking with our partners and end customers, it seems that by consolidating data into one centralised database, you are assured a holistic view of global information, which is manageable from a single location. In addition, with so much information being accessed from numerous geographies, it’s ineffectual for data to be shared and duplicated across multiple databases. With one, centralised system, no redundancy is allowed; there is one place to add, update and remove data, maintaining data integrity and assuring simplified data administration.
By centralising corporate data, productivity can be improved and training is a much quicker and simpler practice. With all processes in the same place and format, users have just one system to understand, which saves time on training and improves efficiency in retrieving data. There’s also no time wasted waiting for synchronisation across different geographies and instant changes can be made to information which lowers occurrences of data duplication and inaccuracies.
Indeed, the data centre is the central point of an IT infrastructure, the place where all sensitive, confidential information is gathered. Therefore, it’s a place where security solutions need to be extremely efficient. By approaching data management with a single corporate database, not only are updates synced but so are all security measures, from one central location. By employing a preventive approach and only giving certain staff authorised access to update security measures, businesses can reduce the chance of successful hacking attacks.
Market and industry trends are changing the world of work, driving companies to not just improve but to transform their approach to business processes and data centre management. I believe that by implementing a centralised data system, companies will be able to address the need to store increasingly large volumes of corporate data, while meeting business needs such as increased productivity and reduced costs. Partners and resellers need to start educating end users about preparing now for the continuous surge in data volumes by putting an effective, reliable and flexible management strategy in place.