The need for speed holding back SEA productivity: Nimble study
By Digital News Asia June 16, 2016
- The app-data gap can cause significant productivity drains and economic losses
- Don’t blame storage: App slowdowns can come from across the infra stack
IN a global survey on the impact that application performance delays have on company performance, 72% of respondents in South-East Asia said their productivity is hampered by the speed – or lack thereof – of technology.
The Mind the Gap report, which Nimble Storage produced in collaboration with Oxford Economics, found that delays in propagating and refreshing application data – the app-data gap – can cause significant productivity drains and economic losses.
The report surveyed nearly 3,000 IT professionals and business application users based in Australia, Germany, the United Kingdom, the United States, and South-East Asia, Nimble Storage said in a statement.
Based on a calculation derived from the survey results, more than half (57%) of workers believe that more than 10% of their workday is wasted waiting on technology to deliver the information they need.
Nearly two-thirds of all respondents and 75% of South-East Asian respondents reported that the speed of applications they use significantly impacts their ability to perform their best in the workplace.
IT professionals, however, may not realise the magnitude of the problems residing within their own companies, allowing the small delays from the app-data gap to add up to big headaches, Nimble Storage said in its statement.
While half of South-East Asian business users say they avoid using some software applications at work because they run too slowly, only 18% of IT professionals think their users are either unsatisfied or very unsatisfied with the way software systems work at their companies.
A corresponding report, Can Machine Learning Prevent Application Downtime?, analyses data collected by Nimble Storage and points to the most pertinent hurdles impacting the speed at which companies access the data that powers applications.
“It’s no mystery why business users expect access to data to be immediate and continuous. The conundrum facing IT decision-makers is how to predict and prevent performance bottlenecks before users perceive a slowdown in responsiveness,” said Nimble Storage chief executive officer Suresh Vasudevan.
“The performance bottleneck between the data and the application, which we call the ‘app-data gap,’ negatively impacts employee work-time and ultimately impairs business performance.
“We believe that by bypassing reactive approaches for root cause analysis that typically take days or weeks, IT departments can harness data sciences and machine learning to predict and prevent barriers to data velocity while fully empowering employees to achieve their best,” he added.
Key findings (click infographic on the right to view in full):
- 73% of respondents from South-East Asia agree that the speed of applications they use significantly affects their ability to perform their best.
- 57% of South-East Asian respondents say they lose more than 10% of their workday waiting on technology to deliver the information they need, compared with 42% in the United Kingdom, 39% in Australia, and 30% in Germany.
- 43% of South-East Asian respondents say they waste more than 10 minutes each workday waiting for a software application to respond.
- 50% of all respondents avoid using certain applications at work because they run too slowly.
- Close to nine in 10 (88%) of all respondents said they are less tolerant of delays than they were five years ago.
Millennials feel the pain:
- 77% of Millennials say that sub-optimal application performance affects their ability to achieve their personal best, compared with just half of Baby Boomers and 72% of Gen Xers.
- Half of Millennials surveyed say they’ve stopped using an application because it runs too slowly – significantly more than users in other age cohorts.
- Over three-fourths of Millennials say they occasionally or constantly experience delays when accessing or inputting information with business software, compared with 60% of Baby Boomers.
It’s not about storage, silly
Today’s IT infrastructure is full of complexity. A major app-data gap can disrupt data delivery, degrade worker productivity, create customer dissatisfaction, and damage a company’s overall speed of business and reputation, Nimble Storage said.
While it’s easy and commonplace to point to data storage as the primary culprit for the app-data gap, the factors leading to application slowdowns come from a range of issues across the infrastructure stack, it argued.
According to a Nimble Storage Predictive Analytics Report – which analysed more than 12,000 cases documenting examples of app-data gap related issues across the Nimble install base of more than 7,500 customers – 54% of all issues have nothing to do with storage, the company claimed.
The majority of issues arise from challenges with configuration (28%), interoperability (11%), non-storage best practices impacting performance (8%) and host, compute or VM-related (virtual machine) issues (7%).
Of the 46% of storage issues detected, hardware and software problems, software update assistance and performance setbacks are most common, the company said.
These findings debunk the IT professionals’ first instinct that storage infrastructure is the primary cause of application performance issues, Nimble Storage argued.
This presumption leads IT professionals to implement fast flash-based storage technologies to accelerate performance, but flash alone does not address the 54% of unrelated storage issues, it added.
To close the app-data gap, IT organisations need to leverage predictive analytics that incorporate both data science and machine learning to optimise the performance and availability of applications, according to Nimble Storage.
These technologies are designed to help identify poor performance early, minimise or eliminate the effects of an issue, prevent businesses from encountering the same problem as their competitors, and continually improve performance and availability for users, it added.
To request a copy of the Mind the Gap report, go here. To request a copy of the Can Machine Learning Prevent Application Downtime? report, go here.
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