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CA-Sponsored Global Study Finds Data Center Automation to Become Increasingly Significant over 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 increasingly more significant over the next one to two years. This is the key finding of a recent independent study sponsored by CA.

Similar to the global virtualization management study CA announced February 11, 2008, this study surveyed 300 CIOs and other top IT executives at companies in the U.S., 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 a significantly higher percentage of U.S. respondents (40%) identify compliance and audit as a top goal compared to those in EMEA (24%) and APAC (19%).

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 agilityensuring 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 U.S. indicated that ITIL is driving the need for automation in the data center; this compares to 48% in EMEA and 38% 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%), followed by EMEA (38%) and the U.S. (13%). The likelihood of using business intelligence to govern the automation of IT processes worldwide is expected to grow over the next three years.

An executive summary of the survey and the full results are available at http://www.ca.com/dca/survey.

Published Monday, March 31, 2008 7:12 PM by David Marshall
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Comments
wwatson - (Author's Link) - April 8, 2008 1:19 PM

The findings of this report are very interesting and confirm what we are seeing at our customer engagements. There is significant focus on data center automation to better align IT with business objectives, so that service levels can be improved and changing business priorities can be addressed. However it appears that most of the automation being implemented is in the area of patch management and server provisioning. It is important to note that automation can also save a tremendous amount of effort in the performance management arena and this should be a focus for data center automation initiatives as well. Analytics based solutions for performance management provide tremendous labor savings while driving effective business service management (BSM), through correlation of business performance problems to the causes in the IT Infrastructure.

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