Author: Reid Engstrom
Many IT organizations are reluctant to drive virtualization to high levels in their compute environment, while casting a speculative eye toward the software-defined data center (SDDC), which expands virtualization to include networking, storage, and management platforms. This reticence is hardly surprising since these advances require changing the data center environment, and change has always introduced the possibility of a technical fault widespread enough to affect business operations.
Though IT continues to build stronger change management systems and to test environments to mitigate risk, the IT organization in general is still reluctant to consider major or rapid change.
That may have to change as cloud providers put increasing pressure on IT organizations. Whereas IT formerly had a monopoly on services for lines of business, they now have to compete with public cloud services, like Amazon Web Services (AWS), that include fast provisioning, known costs, and a higher level of end-user control. Plus, these services are not controlled or limited by restrictive IT processes.
This competitive landscape is forcing IT to rethink its resistance to change. There is a growing sense of urgency for the IT organization to become more agile, more transparent on service costs, and more collaborative with business stakeholders.
The software-defined data center extends the virtualization concepts you know—abstraction, pooling, and automation—to all data center resources and services. In conjunction with a sophisticated virtualized and automated environment, the SDDC also provides usage cost transparency that will keep your IT organization well ahead of the third-party service providers nipping at its heels.
Watch this short video to learn more about the results that Columbia Sportswear IT has achieved with a VMware software-defined data center.
Reid Engstrom is a VMware Accelerate Advisory Services strategist emeritus.
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