Data centre availability the biggest concern: Brocade survey

  • Survey of 350 global resellers and SIs on customers’ biggest concerns
  • Opportunity for the channel to become strategic advisors to global enterprises

A BROCADE survey among channel resellers across the globe has revealed that ‘data centre availability’ is their customers' biggest concern (40% of respondents).
Moreover, the survey indicated that this concern is limiting innovation and the adoption of next-generation applications and services, which poses an immediate opportunity for the channel to seize a competitive advantage by becoming strategic advisors to global enterprises and helping them understand how fabric-based data centre environments deliver tomorrow's networks today, Brocade said in a statement.
The survey was conducted among 350 global resellers and systems integrators, with the support of Avnet, TD Azlan, TechData, Arrow ECS, edsLAN, immix group, Mindware and Westcon, the company said.
The survey found that 60% of end-users view fabrics as the future of networks. However, willingness to invest in data centre networks remains a key stumbling block to enterprises' ability to deploy the on-demand, highly flexible and robust infrastructure they need, Brocade said.
Data centre availability the biggest concern: Brocade surveyAlmost a third of the channel stated that their customers only invested in networks to support the deployment of a specific new application or service, and more than one in 10 admitted that investment was made only when the network was already failing.
“There is a growing recognition that fabrics are the future of data centre networking,” said Sean Ong (pic), Malaysia country manager for Brocade.
“However, many enterprises are still relying on legacy environments that are no longer fit for purpose, especially as they look to leverage the benefits of software-defined networking (SDN) – and this presents the channel with a terrific opportunity.
“Channel partners that can help customers take the journey to fabrics will succeed in the new networking landscape,” he claimed.
According to the survey, the five top drivers of network investment are: The desire to adopt virtualisation (41%); demand for faster access to data and applications (41%); demand for greater bandwidth (32%); the need to support increasing data volumes (25%); and the need to support mobility (24%).
Data centre availability the biggest concern: Brocade surveyOther key findings (click infographic to enlarge):

  • More than 60% of the channel believes it will be ‘standard’ or ‘very common’ for fabric networks to be deployed in data centres by 2020.
  • A quarter of the channel believes SDN will be a significant trend by 2020, but currently a third admits to knowing little about SDN.
  • 62% of the channel believes budget constraints are having a ‘significant impact’ on customers' ability to invest in technology, with 63% seeing vendor financing as ‘vital’ or ‘more important’ over the next few years.
  • However, flexibility, not cost savings, is the main reason customers adopt the cloud (cited by almost a third of respondents), followed by fast adoption of applications according to 18%.
  • The channel cites ‘competition from vendors’ and ‘lack of experienced sales people’ as well as ‘low awareness of services value’ as the top three challenges they face in building their services revenues.
  • 62% of respondents who have engaged with public sector customers expect investment from this vertical to ‘increase’ or ‘significantly increase’ by 2020.

“Our findings clearly illustrate that there is an immediate need for partners to engage customers now, and help them on their journey to a fabric-based data centre infrastructure,” said Bill Lipsin, vice president of Global Channel Sales and Marketing at Brocade.
“In addition to a world-class solutions portfolio, the Brocade Alliance Partner Programme and Capital Solutions offerings are uniquely positioned to help our partners stand out in what is a highly competitive market, and deliver customers a strategically differentiated offering,” he claimed.
To check out a report based on the findings, a presentation of the data, and a graphic showing the key findings, click here.
Related Stories:
Brocade introduces its Fabric Vision Technology
Brocade unveils strategy to unite physical and virtual networking
Brocade out to shed SAN player image

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