How to reap the benefits of virtualization

Forrester Research virtualization experts share advice on how to get stakeholders on your side, give your staff the right tools and maximize IT productivity.

Despite the broad adoption of server virtualization, many firms still struggle with the technical and organizational changes that virtualization brings. In a report, Forrester Research virtualization experts Galen Schreck and Rachel Dines recommend three best practices your organization must follow in order to reap the maximum efficiencies and cost-savings of adopting virtualization:

  1. Get the stakeholders on your side, by proving that virtualization works. Start small with a trial of the development or test environment on one of the company's non-critical apps. Before beginning, set up achievable service-level agreements (SLAs) and then prove that the virtual machines can reliably meet or outperform them.
  2. Give  your IT staff the tools they need to be successful. With new technologies come new required skills, you must decide how to get your IT staff up to speed. Staff members need to be trained not only on new technical skills, but also on some of the softer skills they will need when running the virtual environment, such as communications, planning, and negotiating.
  3. Improve agility by maximizing productivity. Use virtualization as a driver toward more centralized IT services. Because virtualization requires a centralized environment to reach the economies of scale required for maximum cost savings, organizations can leverage this to drive towards more centralized IT services.

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