The Role of DCIM in a Lean, Clean and Mean Datacenter

Kumar Prabhas, MD, Unisys India | Thursday, 02 June 2016, 10:47 IST

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The current technology trends are proving their potential to be disruptive to IT organizations and to reshape the delivery of critical IT services to organizations and end users. The proliferation of mobile devices is compelling organizations to incorporate mainstream consumer technologies within their business models to satisfy a growing base of tech-savvy employees, customers, and citizens. This phenomenon is bound to accelerate within corporate IT environments, as new generations of powerful mobile devices are released and employees increasingly inter-mingle work and personal activities on the same device, regardless of whether it is personally owned or provided by their employers. The workplace collaboration and knowledge management are getting a strategic platform in the form of leveraged social computing for modernizing mission-critical enterprise applications and a need to develop integrated strategy is evident for the organizations to maximize the value from their social computing investments and to address various challenges such as security and privacy. 
The interconnected users, devices, and sensors are today contributing to data volumes that simply cannot be interpreted and acted upon using traditional techniques. The issue is broader than simply a storage issue around “big data”. What is required is intelligent data analytics that can interpret data streams in real-time and make appropriate and automated business decisions. The increasing sophistication, frequency, and scale of cyber-crime are placing escalating pressures on enterprises to protect sensitive data and infrastructure. While no organization is immune to cyber security attacks, the most effective organizations can limit the impact of cyber threats and successfully respond, recover, and resume normal operations quicker. The service providers today help transform data centers and offer IT sourcing solutions to achieve maximum return. They help their customers strategically prioritize and deliver modernization initiatives that make operations more agile and secure.

DCIM in India
Although India forms only a small part of the global infrastructure management (IM) services market, the share and pace of growth is fast increasing. The current size of the global IM services market is pegged at $370-380 billion, of which close to 40 percent is outsourced to vendors in low cost locations, with India being one of the most attractive destinations, simply because it provides compelling advantages in terms of cost, evolution of technologies, availability of a skilled talent pool, and increased maturity of Indian vendors offering end-to-end infrastructure services. Today, Indian service providers deliver close to about $4 billion worth of services in the IM services space, with this opportunity set to grow in the coming years.
The modern enterprise data center remains the essential powerhouse behind an organization’s business critical IT systems. CIOs and IT managers are deeply engaged, and often challenged, in the task of making their data centers as lean, clean, and mean as possible. In this backdrop, Data Center Infrastructure Management (DCIM) is receiving increasing traction in the market. Gartner has predicted that the DCIM market in India will reach Rs 500 crores by 2014. DCIM enables organizations to effectively assess and establish the inherent value of all their data center assets and provides them with clear insight into power usage, utilization, applications, and overall performance. Moreover, with the recent focus on cutting costs and conserving energy, organizations are looking for ways to achieve their business goals, without the additional burden on their infrastructure. 
When it comes to effectively serving data centers, organizations need a holistic approach without which they will undoubtedly experience higher support costs, as they pay multiple vendors and undergo long repair schedules. The goal is for companies to find the optimal price performance balance and the right support methodology for their business objectives, operating model, and IT portfolio.

New Paradigm
In today’s IT environments, everyone is being asked to do more with less. Organizations must cut costs, optimize existing assets, improve service levels, and satisfy increasingly stringent compliance mandates. Companies have to find ways to redirect funds into projects and sourcing options that will cut costs, reduce server real estate, energy use, and achieve optimal quality. The old paradigm of adding more hardware, storage, redundancy, and people has hit an evolutionary dead end.
Anytime, anywhere connectivity through social networks and mobile applications and the demand for instant-on, personal choice, and just-in-time capacity is exploding. This high demand for the always-connected government and market place is driving application utilization upward. There are more applications available than ever before - standard apps, mission-critical proprietary apps - all needing to co-exist in a way that provides for a superior consumer and worker experience. The challenge is how to reduce application footprints, costs, and risks, while supporting growing expectations around innovation and user experience. The answer lies in extracting more business value from fewer, existing applications and taking advantage of emerging application delivery models, such as Cloud and Software as a Service.

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