Mid-size enterprises lead technology adoption in the data centre

Mid-size enterprises around the world are leading the way when it comes to adopting new technologies, Symantec Corp. (NASDAQ: SYMC) states, after revealing results from its 2010 State of the Data Centre global research report.

The third annual worldwide State of the Data Centre survey was conducted over the month of November 2009 on behalf of Symantec by Applied Research Associates Inc. The survey included 1,780 responses from high-level IT staff members, ranging from small enterprises (1,000-1,999 employees), mid-size enterprises (2,000-9,999 employees) and large enterprises (10,000 and up employees). Of these respondents, 563 were from North America, including 50 participants from Canada.

The survey found that because data centres are becoming increasingly more complex and harder to manage, mid-size enterprises are “leading the way and are being more aggressive when it comes to adopting and using new technologies,” said Sean Derrington, director of storage management and high availability at Symantec.

These new technologies that Derrington refers to include things such as data deduplication, thin provisioning, archiving, backup and recovery plans, as well as disaster recovery plans.

The survey also found that mid-size enterprises are adopting new technology initiatives at a rate of 11 to 17 per cent higher than small or large enterprises are.

“Mid-size enterprises have enough budget and the staffing resources to be able to adopt new technologies,” Derrington said. “This makes them more flexible and agile. Large enterprises tend to be bogged down with things like approvals, whereas small enterprises just don’t have the time or people resources.”

As a result of this, Derrington said channel partners have the opportunity to reach out to this space to help these businesses with their hardware, software and services in the data centre space.

“Partners can provide hardware, software and services in areas around backup recovery and can help customers create and revise their disaster recovery plans,” he explained. “For partners, software will continue to be the value that they can provide to their customers. A lot of technology is hardware-based, but the software will provide that flexibility so that partners can work across different types of hardware.”

Of the top 10 initiatives that the survey respondents listed as being “somewhat” or “absolutely” important, the top three included security, backup and recovery and continuous data protection, Derrington said. The others included, server virtualization, storage resource management, data archiving, energy savings, server consolidation, replication of backup data and storage virtualization.

On the disaster recovery plan front, only 80 per cent of respondents said they were confident with their current plan. One-third of the respondents said they have a plan that is either undocumented or needs improvement, and the same amount also said their businesses haven’t re-evaluated their disaster recovery plan in the past 12 months.

“A full disaster recovery test should be conducted on at least an annual basis,” Derrington advised. “This includes re-evaluating the technology, people and processes. From a technology perspective, the disaster recovery plan should be evaluated on an ongoing basis, on a quarterly, minimum basis.”

With staffing and budgets continuing to remain tight amongst businesses, Derrington said partners can offer their help by extending things like services, or educational advice and support to customers.

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Maxine Cheung
Maxine Cheung
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