04-08-13 | Blog Post

Data Center Complexity Rises

Blog Posts

In a Symantec study of over 2,400 organizations globally, it was found that almost 80% of IT professionals are finding their data centers becoming increasingly complex. Lots of factors contribute to complexity within the in-house data center, and with their benefits come a slew of risks that could result in high costs for companies.

Rise In Business Critical Applications

65% of the organizations polled stated that a rise in business critical applications was a driving factor for the increased complexity within their data centers. The capability of internet users has increased dramatically in the past few years. With technological advances, it’s not only possible to get high availability from businesses, it’s expected. This ‘everything needs to be available, always’ mentality puts pressure on the data center to decrease downtime, while the number of applications continues to rise.

Mobile Computing and Virtualization

Mobile computing, from e-commerce transactions to BYOD to healthcare, has revolutionized the way we use the internet. However, 44% of people polled believe that the introduction of mobile computing has caused their data center processes to become more convoluted.

Virtualization was also viewed as a complication from many of the organizations. It is a newer implementation, which means learning training for the new processes, and has its own costs associated with setup. Virtualization isn’t the ideal solution for every job, so oftentimes hybrid solutions are warranted, which leads to more complexity in the data center.

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What Are The Risks Of Data Center Complexity?

The highest ranked effect of data center complexity was higher costs. Also on the lists were security breaches, downtime, and compliance issues, among others. In industries like healthcare that needs to be HIPAA compliant, or e-commerce companies who rely on high availability and are required to be PCI compliant, these issues can have detrimental results to more than just their bottom line.

Simplification Through Standardization

One step organizations are taking to mitigate these issues is standardizing their hardware, applications, and security. Streamlining the processes within these areas can help reduce user error, save money, and simplify their data center.

Another tip from Symantec is to be aware of what IT assets you have, and how they are being used. Having transparency in this area can help cut costs where inefficiencies are found, and will hold groups within an organization accountable for their use.

Outsourcing to a hosting provider can also help to alleviate some of the costs and risks associated with a complex environment. With the managed services of some providers the risks associated with user error can be minimized. Managed cloud hosting with a service provider can be cost effective without the trouble of training staff. Utilizing the expertise of a provider can also help eliminate inefficiencies within your system and allow companies the flexibility to focus on their applications without spending so much energy ensuring high availability. On top of that, finding a provider who has been independently audited for HIPAA and PCI compliance means a collaboration that can help lower the risk of a compliance-related incident.

Whether in-house or outsourced, advancements in tech like mobile computing and virtualization are going to mean new stressors for the data center environment. It’s important to analyze and streamline processes in order to stay simple, nimble, and secure in production.

More Reading:

State of Cloud Security: Vetting Applications and Cloud Providers for Compliance and Security
Investing In Data Center Efficiencies- Part One
Investing In Data Center Efficiencies- Part Two

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