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Virtualization Consolidation Drives Data Center Automation Efforts

CA Survey Says That Data Center Automation is to Become Increasingly Significant Over the Next Two Years

While data center automation already plays a significant role in IT organizations' efforts to link services with business priorities and objectives, the role of automation will become more significant over the next one to two years. This is the key finding of a recent independent study sponsored by CA.

This study surveyed 300 CIOs and other top IT executives at companies in the US, EMEA and APAC with more than $250 million in annual revenue. It found the top three goals companies are hoping to achieve with data center automation efforts are uptime/business continuity, performance management, and enabling dynamic response to changes in business demands.

It also revealed that a higher percentage of US respondents (40 percent) identify compliance and audit as a key driver compared to those in EMEA (24 percent) and APAC (19 percent).

"IT leaders know they must improve their levels of insight and automation in order to optimize business service delivery and gain competitive advantage," said Paula Daley, vice president of product marketing for CA. "Data center automation enables IT to move beyond software provisioning and job scheduling to help deliver true enterprise agility-ensuring that the IT infrastructure is responsive and scalable to the dynamics of real-time business."

The most important benefits of automation, according to the respondents, are achieving greater operational efficiency/productivity, improved service level availability, the ability to deliver IT services based on business priorities, higher availability and a reduction in human error.

The respondents also noted that virtualization and server consolidation are driving data center automation efforts. Hiring and retaining the right people with the right skills is also among the top strategies companies will count on to help their IT organizations achieve objectives this year.

"By optimizing the utilization of servers, data center automation enables IT to put Green IT initiatives into practice by managing virtualization, server consolidation, power conservation and provisioning," added Daley.

Best practice frameworks continue to be a driver for automation. Fifty-one percent of respondents in the US indicated that ITIL is driving the need for automation in the data center; this compares to 48 percent in EMEA and 38 percent in APAC.

One-third of respondents worldwide are currently using business intelligence to govern the automation of IT processes. This percentage is highest in APAC (48 percent), followed by EMEA (38 percent) and the US (13 percent). The likelihood of using business intelligence to govern the automation of IT processes worldwide is expected to grow over the next three years.

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