There are no walk in, walk out 'value meals' when it comes to data management.
While marketers across many verticals use throwaway terms, like value meals and value plans as a way to get customers in the door, defining value in the enterprise requires a deep understanding of a unique set of customer circumstances - especially for IT departments grappling with a storm of data management challenges.
As tempting as it may be, data management vendors owe it to their customers to calculate value beyond speeds and feeds or time savings and performance improvements. We need to look at other factors. For example, providing customers with peace of mind resulting from reduced risk of data loss, and customer satisfaction with vendor support are also important measures of product success.
To do some additional digging into the topic, we recently teamed up with industry research firm IDC to get a better understanding of how customers are getting greater value though Simpana software and its consolidated data approach to information management. Through IDC’s research, we confirmed that a consolidated management platform can help by:
- Enabling nonstop IT operations, allowing managers to meet aggressive RPOs/RTOs for application recovery while meeting budget objectives.
- Reducing complexity, mitigating risk, and allowing end users greater access to their data anytime, anyplace, and on any device, with self-service recovery options.
- Increasing storage efficiency and optimization through the use of data deduplication or compression to control infrastructure costs.
- Reducing IT staff time, including the time needed to customize scripts and manage and implement point-oriented products for data protection, recovery, replication, and archiving.
Although that sounded great, we needed to hear the value story directly from our customers. Through a Commvault survey of more than 330 of its North American customers (conducted in the summer of 2013), IDC was also able to validate the following findings:
- Many customers use additional capabilities beyond backup, such as content indexing, archiving, replication, snapshot management, and deduplication.
- The use of a single platform allowed many customers to see significant reductions in weekly administration time, despite high rates of annual data growth. Based on the survey, Simpana software customers reported a 50-percent-plus reduction for backup administration, 61 percent reduction for reporting, 60 percent reduction in weekly time spent searching for data for recovery, and 52 percent reduction in administration time for snapshots.
- Further, 39 percent of customers avoided adding another full-time employee, a significant cost savings for customers dealing with exponential data growth costs.
- Consolidating onto a single platform reduced risk. Based on the survey, 29 percent of Simpana software customers were experiencing 'high or significant' risk (exposure to data loss, revenue loss, or litigation or compliance issues) before deploying Simpana software and an additional 49 percent were experiencing 'moderate risk.' After Simpana software was deployed, those customers experiencing higher risk dropped to 3 percent, and fully 76 percent of customers described their exposure to risk as 'low or very low.'
Lastly, to continue on our path to provide value for customers, Commvault recently unveiled the Simpana Storage Efficiency Calculator with the goal of helping customers learn how they can reduce their data footprint. That said, we must do more.
Leo Tignini is a Senior Manager of Public Relations at Commvault.