The Backup Consolidation Imperative

Posted 08/12/2016 by Commvault

The drive to modernize IT is in full swing. It is manifesting itself as both quite possibly the largest number of large scale tech refreshes in IT history, a sea change in the vendor landscape and widespread IT re-organization. This profound change is largely a response to the need to compete in the new digital economy. The main requirement in this shift is to gain agility while simultaneously reducing traditional infrastructure scaling costs so that vital innovation can be funded.

IT itself is changing to meet the new challenges of the digital era. IT organizations are being asked to support fast-paced innovation and business growth, as well as supporting traditional applications and apply effective governance. As a result, budget allocations are shifting away from predominately supporting operations. IT is re-organizing to support the innovation and growth required, often re-organizing and/by splitting into different front end/back end groups (described by Gartner as bimodal IT). This includes the formation of dedicated Innovation and DevOps groups.

IT has historically experienced change as a series of incremental upgrades. However, recent technology advances that offer significant benefits in scale, agility and cost are resulting in widespread change and technology refreshes. The most visible and disruptive is cloud adoption but converged and hyper-converged infrastructure, non-relational distributed databases, big data, scale-out hardware and software defined are also significant forces driving change.

Backup and recovery is one barrier many organizations face in implementing these changes. That can present a stubborn obstacle. The reason is simple: complexity derived from multiple backup/recovery products installed across the enterprise. These have typically been deployed to meet different needs, each bringing its own point of management, catalogue and discreet infrastructure. M&A activity is a major cause of this product proliferation, as are tactical product selections, distributed purchasing, a lack of standards and short term CxO appointments.

The outcome of these fragmented deployments are wasted resources, poor visibility and reporting, and worse, poor recoverability or limited recovery options. More painful still, these products rapidly become legacy systems. This can slow the adoption of new technologies needed for vital business initiatives, leaving IT organizations with a painful choice: more ‘band-aid’ fixes or slower progress on modernization.

The solution? Consolidation, which simplifies the backup and recovery landscape considerably. It provides an enterprise-wide virtual repository, a single point of management and reporting, and lean, efficient infrastructure. Moreover, in an IT landscape that is increasingly de-centralized and geographically dispersed with data spread across cloud, data center, mobile and end points, creating a virtual repository is fundamental to establishing the visibility and control necessary to deliver other modern, enterprise-grade services (such as cloud migration and workload portability).

The business case for consolidation is straightforward and is built upon the savings that accrue from central control, comprehensive end-to-end reporting and visibility, simplified license management, a single maintenance renewal, centralized upgrades and a reduced training burden. According to IDC, simplification conducted using Commvault software can result in savings from 42-52%.

Commvault’s leading cloud technology also accelerates cloud adoption/migration and enables many alternate use cases, such as Cloud DR and Cloud Dev & Test. This joined-up approach reduces wasted infrastructure with more efficient processes that are designed to work together from the outset, rather than the acquired portfolios of our competitors or anything IT organizations can assemble themselves from point products. From being a potential obstacle to progress, if backup and recovery is correctly architected and deployed, then it becomes a strategic enabler.

The benefits of consolidation using Commvault software are well described and independently verified in the IDC Commvault Customer Survey.   An investment in Commvault can be extended to support archive, compliance, data mobility and other data related tasks over time, making the case even more compelling.

Making the case that Commvault is the right choice to consolidate backup and recovery is equally straightforward, as Commvault is identified as a leader in the 2016 Gartner Data Center Backup & Recovery Software Magic Quadrant.

This is an important consideration, as consolidation is only effective when a single modern platform is deployed. EMC would have the market believe that a reduction of vendors is the answer, but vendor reduction would not deliver the same result; it really is the unifying technology that has the most dramatic effect, which drives the savings.

For our customers, switching is easier and lower risk than ever before. Commvault has proven migration tools and highly-rated global services to assist the move. With that, the case for consolidation becomes compelling: Commvault can transform backup from being part of the problem of slow change in traditional IT in becoming part of the modern solution toward agility, at a significantly lower cost.