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Beyond infrastructure convergence: how to deliver value to your business

By Mohammed Safder


mohammed_safder_badge.jpgIn my previous blogs Beyond Cost Cutting and Beyond improving efficiencies and automating business processes, I talked about the fundamental issues IT needs to address to deliver value to the business. In the majority of organizations, “virtualization first,” in particular server virtualization, is pretty much the norm. But taking a siloed approach to virtualizing the workloads will not help an IT organization deliver the desired business outcomes.


In this blog, I’ll look at what organizations need to do, above and beyond infrastructure convergence and virtualization, to deliver value to the business.


The convergence journey started way back when the isolated network became the Internet of today. This was quickly followed by the convergence of server, storage and network. HP’s Converged Infrastructure strategy and portfolio of products and services pioneered this era by helping customers across the globe to gain convergence value at each step of the way through modular, standards-based technology building blocks – designed for convergence – while maintaining optimal protection of their existing investments.


Now we’re heading toward the convergence of data centers themselves – the Converged Data Center. At the highest level, Converged Data Center focuses on accelerating time-to-business value. This can be accomplished by bringing all the IT-related functions together in a holistic manner from the standpoint of facilities, IT infrastructure, people and processes.


However, one size doesn’t simply fit all. Organizations can take a more comprehensive, Big Bang transformation approach or take a more incremental approach to achieve the desired end state. You can even combine the two approaches by putting a big-picture plan in place that helps you move forward as opportunities present themselves to make changes in the data center environment.


HP is consistently leading the era of convergence through our Converged Data Center strategy. We offer a portfolio of products and services that deliver the data center of the future. Most importantly, we help you eliminate silos and integrate IT domains to deliver new levels of simplicity, integration, and automation to accelerate business outcomes that matter. A case in point: HP OneView, which we launched recently, is the first software platform that creates a modern and integrated workspace for lifecycle management of HP Converged infrastructure. This approach shifts your management focus from “how devices run” to “how people work.” It helps you maximize productivity at any scale.


Software-defined data center and beyond


The next wave of virtualization is a logical extension of server virtualization. The industry refers to it as wave 3.0 of virtualization, or SDDC (software-defined data center). The concept of SDDC is evolving at a rapid pace and its adoption will soon become mainstream because of the benefits it provides to the enterprise.


In SDDC, compute, memory, network, storage, security and availability services are pooled, aggregated and delivered on demand by intelligent, policy-driven software. The result is a next-generation data center infrastructure, optimized for a service-centric application delivery model.


Coming back to the point of delivering value to the business, the reality of the situation is that enterprise data centers have evolved over time through mergers and acquisitions. Companies have already made investments in a myriad of technologies. Emerging technologies – the likes of SDDC and integrated management – are not going to be a panacea, and companies are trying to avoid rip-and-replace solutions for enterprise data centers. These emerging technologies will become an integral part of the overall Converged Data Center trend, in which virtualized workloads will continue to co-exist along with traditional workloads for a long time.


What’s more, the legacy infrastructure and applications in today’s data centers were often purpose-built, without appropriate integration in mind. For instance, they rarely have entry points or APIs within them. The result is that there’s no reliable way to leverage them in their current form. Today’s IT staffs just have to deal with this reality, and must also rise to the challenge of modernization.


A broad view brings the best ROI


In order to deliver value, IT organizations need to do more than simply integrate existing silos. If you step back and think beyond the technology, it’s necessary to ask: “What do I really need to achieve and what do I want from a converged infrastructure?”


You want a solution where your investment in people, process and technology is leveraged, where everything just works together to create a service-centric and application-oriented environment. To do that you need to approach it in a holistic manner and consider broader aspects of data center convergence in terms of energy and space efficiency, infrastructure integration, and applications portability, as well as the service delivery model and its impact on your people (both end-users and IT staff).


The Converged Data Center model allows coexistence between emerging models and traditional computing, while transforming to a truly integrated style of IT through gradually right-sourcing workloads, right-sizing facilities and right-shaping the organization elements in parallel. Here’s a conceptual view of the CDC:


CDC conceptual.png


As an HP customer, you can benefit from the collaborative impact of our large global ecosystem of over 4,500 global HP AllianceOne members and partners, who make our convergence solutions portfolio one of the most comprehensive in the world. Private industry and public sector customers are using HP solutions as their foundation for today and for the next-generation data center. It’s their blueprint for a modern architecture that’s integrated by design from the ground up.


 HP can assist you at every step of your Converged Data Center journey. Our solutions portfolio helps you to better handle your current and future challenges, with every solution thoughtfully crafted to fit seamlessly into your organization. To make your journey smooth, we provide comprehensive consulting and support services in partnership with certified partners. From planning through implementation, these services help you simplify IT management, optimize future technology upgrades, improve ROI by maximizing IT investment flexibility, and ensure that you obtain the best results and experience.



HP Partnership.png 


Read how HP Converged Data Center can help you prepare for a hybrid future.


Learn more about HP Converged Infrastructure and how we can help you deliver real value to your business.


UPDATE, 2/6/14: HP has announced four new Converged Management Consulting Services that help enterprises accelerate their journey to the Converged Data Center and get new insights into data center facilities, infrastructure, people and processes. Check out Chris Coggrave's blog Blast through the barriers to DCIM with 4 new HP services for the full story on Converged Management.

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About the Author
About the Author(s)
  • I’m a Global Strategist, a certified (PMI) Project Manager, specializing in business to IT alignment, agility consulting, Infrastructure Transformation and Strategic Architecture for Big Data, Mobility, Private Cloud, Unified Communications and Collaboration. I drive the strategy, vision and content of strategic consulting services in the Big Data IT Infrastructure services area at HP. As part of this, I meet with senior level customers to understand their challenges, conduct workshops to determine future vision and roadmaps as well as presenting at industry and analyst events.
  • Craig Partridge is the WW strategy lead for HP Technology Services Networking group. His role now covers strategy for consulting, professional and support services. The major areas of focus are Mobility, UC, Cloud Networking and IPv6. All aligned to core HP networking solutions - simplified, secure, optimized and available.
  • Don has held roles with the business and marketing of consulting for HP. Currently he supports HP's Client and Microsoft Solutions and the emerging Mobility Consulting services. He holds a MBA from UCLA's Anderson School.
  • Over 12 years of consulting, new technology services development and marketing experience covering data center, IT infrastructure, cloud technology domains. Hande holds a M.B.A degree from Bentley College, MA.
  • Having joined HP in 2003 Ian Jagger is the world-wide marketing and program manager for HP Technology Consulting's Strategic Consulting Services, Critical Facilities Services and Energy and Sustainability Management Services, as well as emerging IT services Prior to his current role, he served as the HP Services Marketing Manager for Central and Eastern Europe, Middle East and Africa, having joined HP in a similar role in the Middle East. Prior to HP Jagger had a 15 year international sales career, culminating in being Sales and Marketing Director for Steelcase Inc addressing Northern Europe before focusing more specifically on marketing. His initial focus was consultancy and interim marketing management, primarily for small to mid-sized customers based or looking to expand in the Middle Eastern region. Immediately prior to joining HP he was a strategic marketing consultant addressing investment targets for a technology fund. Born in Rochdale, United Kingdom, Jagger holds an honors bachelor of science degree in economics and a degree in social psychology from Loughborough University, England. He also holds a Masters Diploma in Marketing from the Chartered Institute of Marketing, is a Member of the Chartered Institute of Marketing and a Chartered Marketer. He has one daughter and lives in Cary, North Carolina.
  • Jeff Enters works in the HP Technology Services Networking organization and consults with customers on their IT strategies. He has over 20 years of consulting, design and integration experience in multi-vendor Voice and Data environments.
  • Editor and writer with 12+ years experience in the corporate software and technology sectors.
  • Jordan Lee has over twenty years of consulting and industry experience, helping some of the world’s largest firms craft and implement their business and IT strategies. His priority is to advise Hewlett-Packard clients how to best prepare for and take full advantage of the dramatic shifts in the IT economy taking place today. Over his career, Mr. Lee has held executive positions both in industry and consulting organizations, where he has provided consulting to some of the largest firms in the US. Over the years, he has helped his clients redesign business processes and organizations, and implement strategic IT programs around ERP, System Integration, Business Intelligence, and IT Infrastructure.
  • Jordan owns the worldwide mobility portfolio for TS Network Consulting and is a OneHP Mobility ambassador. His expertise centers on mobility strategy, client and applications virtualization and enterprise mobility management technologies.
  • Eduardo Zepeda, WW TS Social Media Program Manager & Internal Communications for WW Technology Services Blogging on behalf of HP Technology Services (TS_Guest)
  • Ken Larson has over 30 years of experience in Information Technology aligning business to technology. As an Enterprise Architect, he has delivered many successful architecture related services across business and government sectors in manufacturing, insurance, banking, oil, utilities, US state and federal governments. He is certified in TOGAF and IT Service Management.
  • Laura Cunningham is a CPA and business consultant with HP Technology Services Consulting. She helps CIOs and their teams bridge the gap between what the CIO wants and what the CFO requires by building a comprehensive business case that can withstand financial scrutiny.
  • I am on the WW Cloud and Big Data Solutions Team. I help our customers adopt HP advanced solutions that are made up of products and services from across HP. I have over 30 years experience in the technology business including 17 years of business ownership.
  • Broad mix of experiences developed in more than 20 years of technology-driven innovation. Fascinated by changes triggered by mix of behavior, needs and technology. Bachelor in Theoretical Physics.
  • Working for EMEA TS Consulting, I am a Specialist in end to end management of customer data, from creation through consumption, to protection and preservation and ultimately (controlled) destruction. This includes, host, connectivity, storage, data protection and backup and archive, from a technical and more importantly, operational perspective. I have worked in the storage and data management industry for over 15 years, on both sides of the desk, as a customer and now as a consultant.
  • Patrick Lownds is a Senior Technology Consultant and is involved in designing and delivering both Client Virtualization and Cloud Computing solutions in the datacenter. Patrick co-authored “Mastering Hyper-V Deployment
  • I’m a Global Chief Engineer certified Exchange Architect and Master (MCA and MCM), specializing in Messaging, Mobility, Private Cloud, Unified Communications and Collaboration. This relates to all work to coordinate sales, pursuit and delivery readiness in all services that relate to HP's portfolio around Microsoft Exchange. Includes internal readiness as well as external events, analyst briefings. With 25+ year’s experience in the industry. Thomas has been involved with Microsoft products since 1993. Specialties: - Architecting complex public and private Cloud solutions for Exchange, SharePoint and Lync in standard, dedicated or hybrid scenarios. - Lead the HP specialists team unit to win and acheive our business targets and budget - Drive HP's Exchange Services for Private Cloud - Working with partners, vendors and internal teams to align, expand and grow HP's strategy.
  • Tim Swiader has twenty plus years in the Information Technology industry. He has worked primarily with the fortune 100 and legacy carriers transforming their applications, networks and data center facilities.
  • Tom Clement has over 30 years experience in the areas of adult learning, secondary education, and leadership development. During this time Tom has been a consistent champion of “non-traditional” training delivery methods, including blended learning, virtual delivery (self paced and instructor led), the use of training games and simulations, and experiential learning. Tom has spent the past 25 years of his career at Hewlett Packard, focused most recently on HP’s global Virtualization, Cloud, and Converged Infrastructure customer training programs. Tom manages the strategic direction and overall performance of these training programs, ensuring these worldwide programs help HP’s customers capitalize on the business opportunities made available by IT advancements in each of these subject areas. Tom and his global teammates utilize best in class instructors, course content and supporting equipment infrastructure to deliver these training programs to HP’s customers. The team prides itself on providing the Virtualization, Cloud, and Converged Infrastructure content customers need when and where they need it, anywhere in the world. Tom is based in the Washington, DC suburbs and can be reached at
  • Tari is a Distinguished Technologist with 30 years of IT and cyber security experience. He is dual board certified in information security/business continuity and is responsible for a wide range of management and technology consulting services encompassing information security, disaster recovery, privacy, and risk management. His problem-solving skills, knowledge of various technology platforms, compliance statutes, industries, as well as his experience in deploying defense-in-depth and InfoSec Program solution architectures is commonly applied when advising CIOs/CISOs as well as leveraged in numerous HP client engagements throughout the world. Tari has designed, built, and managed some of the world’s largest InfoSec programs allowing them to defend against even the most aggressive attackers.
  • I provide technical consulting services at all phases including analysis, planning, design and implementation. I have a wide range of experience in WAN and LAN technologies, as well as providing security solutions and deploying operating system infrastructure. Besides working directly with clients to deploy technology in their data centers, I also find myself architecting or discussing solutions with a business’s chief information officer, helping to lay out a roadmap for the coming years.
  • Bill is the Principal Data Center Energy Technologist for HP Technology Services. Kosik is a licensed professional engineer, LEED Accredited Professional, a Certified Energy Manager, and a Building Energy Modeling Professional. He is responsible for research and implementation of sustainable, energy-efficient, and environmentally responsible design strategies for data centers. He is currently a subject matter expert for the USGBC on the new LEED Data Centers, the EPA/DOE on unification of energy metrics, and the Green Grid on responding to the EPA’s Energy Star for Data Centers program. He has an engineering degree from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

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