Logicalis Poses Tough Question to CIOs: Is Your Data a Liability or an Asset?

Solution Provider Challenges IT Pros to Take its Quiz, Offers Companies a Step-By-Step Data Transformation Roadmap

NEW YORK, July 1, 2014 – More data is being generated today than ever before, something that’s no secret to the IT pros wrestling with managing it.  The challenge is to move from simply talking about Big Data to actually using it in meaningful ways. To jumpstart discussions, Logicalis US, an international IT solutions and managed services provider (www.us.logicalis.com), is asking CIOs one thought-provoking question: “Is your data a liability or an asset?” For many, that seemingly simple question is the beginning of a data transformation journey – a roadmap that shows you how to turn your data into actionable information that makes it an asset. This allows for better and more strategic corporate decision-making as a result. 

“Big Data is the buzz among CIOs today – how to collect it, store it, manage it and analyze it,” says Bob Hankins, Vice President of Data and Storage Solutions, Logicalis US.  “But there’s an important piece of the discussion that is rarely talked about, and that’s how to pay for it.  Data is only useful when it adds more to the bottom line than it takes to gather, store and crunch it.  And, inevitably, for CIOs who are talking about this, it likely means some changes to their storage infrastructure – whether that’s the addition of new and updated storage technologies to their data center or moving some of their data assets to the cloud.  ROI is the name of the game in data storage, and the end game is to create value for the organization that is unmistakably the result of IT acumen.  But that’s not something that happens overnight; it’s a journey that takes time and significant planning – all well worth it if you can produce split-second access to the data your CEO needs to make a critical business decision based on real facts and analysis in real time.”

Six Steps Along the Data Transformation Journey

(1)   Components: In this first stage, IT pros are feeling the heat; storage equipment purchases are not necessarily aligned to business strategy, and new storage requirements seemingly pop up out of thin air.  It’s clear that a roadmap is needed, as well as tools to identify current utilization, performance and capacity of the storage that does exist.

(2)   Storage Services: In the second step along a data transformation journey, while performance and availability may be inadequate, there are some elements of common storage management strategies in place.  Future needs may not have been identified, and storage, at this stage, is often perceived as underutilized and overly expensive.  Disaster recovery from backups may be too slow, and it’s clear that a move to more advanced techniques is needed to improve efficiency, automation and availability.

(3)   File Services: With all the rules and regulations surrounding retention of data, it’s hard to know what to store where.  If file servers and network attached storage servers are bulging, it’s important to establish retention rules and introduce new tools to enforce them.

(4)   Information Services: By this point, companies are gathering unprecedented amounts of data – much of it unstructured, creating both a liability and a lost opportunity.  It’s time to start examining the company’s unstructured data and implement indexing for faster search and discovery.

(5)   Knowledge Services: By the fifth stage of this journey, IT pros know where they’re headed, but their data is siloed with structured data in databases, semi-structured data in email systems, and unstructured data in file servers or content management systems.  The company needs a solution to validate, integrate and rationalize its data across different systems, as well as tools for accessing and reporting on this data in a uniform fashion.

(6)   Emergent Services: By the end of this journey, the company’s data management has undergone a true transformation. Storage is predictable and efficient.  Both structured and unstructured data are well understood and managed throughout their lifecycle.  Now it’s time to identify practical use cases for analytics that will yield meaningful business results and a solid return on the company’s data storage investment. 

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About Logicalis

Logicalis is an international IT solutions and managed services provider with a breadth of knowledge and expertise in communications and collaboration, data center and cloud services, and managed services.

Logicalis employs nearly 3,700 people worldwide, including highly trained service specialists who design, specify, deploy and manage complex ICT infrastructures to meet the needs of almost 6,000 corporate and public sector customers.  To achieve this, Logicalis maintains strong partnerships with technology leaders such as Cisco, HP, IBM, CA Technologies, EMC, NetApp, Microsoft, VMware and ServiceNow.

The Logicalis Group has annualized revenues of $1.6 billion, from operations in Europe, North America, Latin America and Asia Pacific, and is fast establishing itself as one of the leading IT and Communications solution integrators specializing in the areas of advanced technologies and services.

The Logicalis Group is a division of Datatec Limited, listed on the Johannesburg and London AIM Stock Exchanges, with revenues of over $5 billion.

For more information, visit www.us.logicalis.com.

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