data center evolution and the move to co-Location and cloud

Data Center Evolution and
the Move to Hybrid IT

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Report uncovers trend towards hybrid IT

We have released the findings of a comprehensive survey of 125 Singapore ICT decision makers and their data center and related challenges as surveyed by DataDriven.

This report charts the current and future directions of enterprise ICT in Singapore. The most significant finding is the move away from in-house data centres and towards co-located and cloud processing in a hybrid IT environment.

Reasons behind the trend - managing enterprise computing continues to be challenging

The move is largely driven by the challenges organizations face with the sheer volume of data and the storage it requires. More than half (55.6%) of respondents list this as a major concern, closely followed by the related issue of backup and disaster recovery (54.7%). Capacity planning and virtualization are the third most significant concern (54.0%), followed closely by network management (53.9%) and managing cloud sprawl (too many clouds) at 52.2%.

Most applications today generate vast amounts of information, all of which needs to be stored and analyzed. To meet these challenges most organizations are increasingly adopting a hybrid IT model, combining in-house processing with co-located and cloud-based solutions to respond to specific needs.

The technology and services available to meet mission critical processing needs of organizations is changing dramatically, as are the delivery and commercial models. This creates a number of challenges for businesses and the ICT professionals responsible for implementing and supporting them.

Transitioning from in-house to cloud and co-location

The maintenance of large in-house data centres is becoming increasingly problematical. The data center operational environment requires high degrees of expertise in construction, fit-out and management, and contains thousands of technology components and networking that require specialized power, cooling, backup and security. At the same time cloud-based applications are becoming more robust, and the sophistication of co-located facilities is freeing many organisations from many of the complexities of data management.

That means an increasing amount of enterprise computing is taking place outside the organization. This brings its own challenges. Applications sprawl has been joined by cloud sprawl. Increasingly, ICT operations need to manage hybrid environments and maintain legacy systems, while at the same time building platforms capable of driving Digital Transformation (DX) now and in the future. The challenge for most organizations is how to best manage this transition to a new hybrid provisioning models model embracing the in-house data center, the co-located data center and cloud services.

Significant investment in cloud and data center services on the horizon

The DataDriven report shows that ICT Leaders in Singapore have a clear preference for cloud processing and co-located data centers. More than half (54.5%) of the respondents plan significant levels of investment in cloud services, with significant amounts of investment in data center managed services (operate, maintain) (37.6% of respondents). But in-house data centres are not dead. Data center consulting services such a planning and implementation services (design, build) are planned by 34.0% of ICT decision makers.

Security is also a critical issue for both data centers and cloud, with a particular focus on investment in cloud security over next 12 months (39.2% of respondents).

Leaders believe that cloud is the way of the future

Nearly three quarters (71.2%) of respondents say in-house data centers will have a role to play for the foreseeable future, but nearly half (46.0%) agree that data centers are inherently inefficient, and that cloud is the way of the future (68.8%). Nearly half (45.6%) of respondents plan to increase their budgets for co-located data centers, with only 9.6% expecting a decrease.

The findings show a significant evolution in enterprise data processing. Data centers have evolved considerably in recent years. There have been technology changes such as the move from mainframes to rack-mounted servers, but the biggest change has been how data centers are used and who owns them.

The results of the survey show that Singaporean enterprises are in the midst of a massive move from in-house data centers towards cloud computing, where processing takes place in huge data centers run by service providers. With this move an increasing amount of enterprise computing is taking place outside the organization, across multiple owned and managed platforms in a hybrid IT environment.

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