Data center managers do more with less

Data center managers in both the public and private sectors report being caught between increasing demands for performance and shrinking budgets, according to Symantec Corp.’s 2008 State of the Data Center study.

The survey of 1,600 data center managers in large public- and private-sector organizations also found that staffing is problematic: 36 percent of respondents indicated that they are understaffed, while only 4 percent reported being overstaffed. What’s more, 43 of respondents indicated that finding qualified applicants is a major challenge.

In addition, data center servers and storage are underutilized and disaster recovery plans are out of date, the study added.

The study also found that while many data center managers are pursuing green IT initiatives, the primary driver for those efforts is cost reduction. Reducing electricity consumption was a goal cited by 54 percent of respondents, followed by reducing cooling costs (51 percent) and a sense of responsibility to the environment (42 percent).

“This research confirms what we are seeing in the field,” said Rob Soderbery, senior vice president of Symantec’s Storage and Availability Management Group. “Attention has turned to initiatives that will drive immediate cost reduction, rather than longer-term, [return on investment]-driven programs. Storage has been a primary focus of these initiatives as the demand for capacity continues to rise, despite economic challenges.”

The Symantec report examined data from a survey in late 2008 of 1,600 data center managers in large private- and public-sector institutions located in 21 countries.

About the Author

Patrick Marshall is a freelance technology writer for GCN.

Reader Comments

Thu, Jan 22, 2009 Steve Mackie

There is going to be increased pressure to reduce costs. We can see this in the local DC area. Not too long ago, Discovery Channel laid off 30 employees from their data center, including their entire data storage team. They turned right around hired a vendor to come in and do the same work. As the financial crisis second and third order effects hit, we are going to see more and more pressure on data center managers to economize.

Please post your comments here. Comments are moderated, so they may not appear immediately after submitting. We will not post comments that we consider abusive or off-topic.

Please type the letters/numbers you see above