IT reseller takeaway: Many organizations use server consolidation and virtualization together, and take advantage of reduced costs and lower power consumption; bust most don't know how to track and measure the success of these initiatives, according industry expert Scott Fueless. It's possible that you could offer this analysis to your customers as a service. In this tip excerpt from our sister site SearchServerVirtualization, Fueless shares his successful measuring methodology.
Despite the focus on measuring IT value in recent years, some IT departments have put the cart before the horse where server consolidation and virtualization are concerned. They've deployed virtual machines (VMs) quickly to combat the management challenges of server sprawl in data centers today. A better approach is viewing these initiatives just as they would any other, and any large initiative requires tracking and measuring its impact on cost and efficiency in the data center.
Server consolidation approaches – good, bad and ugly
Most organizations fall into one of three categories when it comes to measuring the impact of consolidation:
- Hope for the Best: These organizations don't implement specific measurement programs. Instead, they bank on the promise of cost savings and hope that an overall downward trend emerges in base costs, such as power or hardware. While these costs are important, they don't provide a complete view of the operational cost of the data center and the true impact of the initiative. Cost also isn't the sole measure of IT efficiency.
- Better than Nothing: Some organizations put a few tools and variables in place to measure basic hardware utilization. However, simply tracking hardware utilization without linking it back to cost, doesn't accurately assess the initiative's overall impact on efficiency.
- The Total Package: Organizations that are getting it right have put in place a system whereby they can track and measure the actual cost of delivering processing to the end-user.
Read the entire tip.