Evolving your product line and following the cutting edge is essential if you want to remain a go-to supplier and consultant for your customers. Stay at the forefront by exploring these six major trends in building data center solutions.
1. Move to hybrid environments
The benefits of the cloud are well established. Today, innovative companies are integrating their on-premises IT with low-cost, on-demand cloud capabilities in the realms of analytics, collaboration, and communication. And while that might slow the speed and scope of some data center construction, it will simultaneously lead to a number of renovations and retrofits meant to accommodate hybrid environments. The cloud providers themselves will also be seeking out data center solutions as they expand their existing data centers, push colocation, and meet the demand for massive scalability.
2. Demand for integrated solutions
Integrated solutions take many forms, but at their core they eliminate the concept that each piece of data center IT is something discrete. That empowers CIOs to rely on prefabricated modules that they can then customize to their needs. In one impressive recent example, Facebook was able to bring a high-performance new data center online in 30 percent less time by relying on an integrated approach. As these metrics continue to come out, expect your customers to clamor for integrated solutions.
3. Embrace of voice plus data
Most devices now support both data and telecommunications. That has lead to a convergence of data centers and traditional telecommunications networking facilities. The effects of this shift are both sweeping and unpredictable, but as the silos between these two functions begin to break down, expect both camps to make major investments in new data center capabilities.
4. Necessity of DCIM
As companies increasingly rely on virtualization for both networking and storage, the management burden this presents will become untenable. That has fueled the growth of data center infrastructure management (DCIM) solutions. These enable data center administrators to get the top-down perspective they need to effectively run physical and virtual systems simultaneously. The benefits are hard to argue with. One study showed that facilities utilizing DCIM recover from outages 85 percent faster. When these outages begin to affect more of your customers, they will come looking to you for fast solutions.
5. Growth of the network edge
Delivering a consistent and customized experience has become a priority for many of today's businesses. That has led them to direct a new focus toward the often neglected edge of network. That is expected to lead to major new investments in infrastructure and an added priority placed on consistency throughout the network. Currently, this represents a significant competitive battleground, so expect changes to be swift.
Cybersecurity has long been the elephant in the room, and data center managers were content to ignore it and place their focus on availability. But as recent expensive and high-profile data breaches have exposed, the time for complacency is over. With metrics piling up about the cost and consequence of even a minor breach, companies likely will be willing to invest major amounts to improve data center security.
What is consistent throughout all these updates is that investment in data centers will continue to be brisk, and customers will be eager to invest in a range of new products. If you don't currently offer products to accommodate their demands, you will miss out on significant revenue streams. Serve your customers better by selling them the products their data centers can't do without.