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- Standards and convergence are driving new skills
- Data centres need to invest in these new skills
- Transition strategies require long term planning
- Outsourcing companies have useful examples
Now more than ever, CIOs are looking to converged infrastructure solutions as a key to rapidly delivering high quality IT services and maximising data centre efficiency. Traditional IT infrastructure silos have created bottlenecks that cripple the quality of service, increase operational costs due to slower workload deployment, and increase room for error.
What really makes converged infrastructure stand apart as a solution to these problems is the ability to achieve a rapid return on investment by quickly configuring infrastructure to deliver desired workloads and through automation. Automation offers a reduction in costs, delays and potential errors associated with current manual processes. Automation also makes it much easier to quickly bring together the compute, storage, and network resources necessary to provision a new application or service, allows the IT environment to respond automatically when an uptick in workload demand starts to create a performance bottleneck – whether that bottleneck is in CPU cycles, server memory, storage I/O or network throughput and allows resources to be released when they are no longer needed—minimizing the all-too-common phenomenon of wasted infrastructure capacity. With convergence in play, the link between automation and efficiency is clear, and this new way of orchestrating workloads and addressing business challenges is increasingly sought after by large and small-to-medium businesses alike.
In 2014, we see the converged infrastructure market expanding exponentially with an increased focus on tailoring to specific customer needs. Customers want to simplify common tasks and operations, they want a lower price and they want the value delivered now. All of these things can be better supplied by examining each unique case and offering the customer the solution best suited to their environment. It’s also important to remember that convergence in the data centre is not just about reducing the number of hardware stacks but about management convergence as well. Converged management is made up of three key parts – automation, orchestration and unified resource management. These elements are key to cloud enablement and we think that there will be even more focus on this in 2014.