Trends in Private Cloud Infrastructure

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1 Research Report Abstract: Trends in Private Cloud Infrastructure By Mark Bowker, Senior Analyst and Bill Lundell, Senior Research Analyst With Jennifer Gahm, Senior Project Manager April 2014

2 Introduction Research Objectives Research Report: Trends in Private Cloud Infrastructure In order to assess organizations use of server virtualization, cloud computing, and integrated computing platforms, ESG recently surveyed 303 IT professionals representing midmarket (250 to 999 employees) and enterprise-class (1,000 employees or more) organizations in North America. All respondents were personally responsible for or familiar with their organizations server virtualization and cloud computing environment and strategy. The survey was designed to answer the following questions: Do organizations consider their IT environments to be private cloud infrastructures? Which of five essential characteristics of cloud computing do organizations believe is the most important attribute of a private cloud infrastructure? What kind of progress have current private cloud users made in terms of each of the five essential characteristics of cloud computing relative to their deployment? What is the software strategy for deploying private cloud infrastructure among current and potential users? What is the hardware strategy for deploying private cloud infrastructure among current and potential users? Do organizations currently use any type of integrated computing platform? Which factors drove organizations to deploy or consider deploying an integrated computing platform(s)? What was the primary reason that they deployed or are considering deploying an integrated computing platform(s)? What benefits have current integrated computing platform users realized from these deployments? What concerns do potential adopters have about deploying an integrated computing platform? What trepidations do organizations with no plans for or interest in integrated computing platforms have about these solutions? How do usage trends for private cloud infrastructure and integrated computing platforms vary by organization size and purchase patterns for IT products and services? Survey participants represented a wide range of industries including manufacturing, financial services, health care, communications and media, retail, government, and business services. For more details, please see the Research Methodology and Respondent Demographics sections of this report.

3 Research Implications for IT Professionals Private cloud and integrated computing platforms represent a shift in the way IT can deploy and manage infrastructure. In order to take full advantage of the capabilties and ultimate value proposition associated with these technologies, IT professionals should: View these platforms as the bridge away from traditional IT provisioning. Integrated computing platforms are designed to deliver predictable performance, condense time to value, and provide favorable economics. When coupled with private cloud architectures, IT stands to recuperate much of the time and effort it takes to deploy and manage today s complex and expansive infrastructure footprints. A such, IT should use integrated computing platforms as a pivot point into environments driven by policy and business process with a more predictable and flexible underlying infrastructure that can rapidly and dynamically respond to change. Leverage integrated computing platforms and private cloud for organizational restructuring purposes. IT management teams should take advantage of the opportunity provided by integrated computing platforms to not only maintain operations at an existing headcount level (i.e., do more with less), but to also look into the possibility of training certain individuals to transition from having purely IT responsibilities into business analyst-type roles. These hybrid resources would be better positioned to align business requirements with IT capabilities, enabling the IT organization to act more like strategic enablers rather than simply tactical firefighters. To be clear, organizations should maintain technology discipline experts, but improving communication and strengthening the relationship between IT and the business via these liaisons will be optimal for both sides. Embrace the simplicity. Integrated computing platforms can help to eliminate rack and stack configuration processes, remove the guess work from interoperability testing and validation, and streamline any support issues that may arise. Private cloud layers nicely on top of integrated computing platform solutions by providing sophisticated management tools, and the synergy between these technologies helps to mitigate complexities associated with traditional technology deployment and management processes by shifting toward a highly efficient and optimally managed IT system.

4 Research Methodology To gather data for this report, ESG conducted a comprehensive online survey of IT professionals from private- and public-sector organizations in North America (United States and Canada) between November 25, 2013 and December 11, To qualify for this survey, respondents were required to be IT managers or IT staff personally responsible for or familiar with their organization s virtualization/cloud computing strategies. All respondents were provided an incentive to complete the survey in the form of cash awards or cash equivalents. After filtering out unqualified respondents, removing duplicate responses, and screening the remaining completed responses (on a number of criteria) for data integrity, we were left with a final total sample of 303 IT professionals. Please see the Respondent Demographics section of this report for more information on these respondents. Note: Totals in figures and tables throughout this report may not add up to 100% due to rounding.

5 Respondent Demographics The data presented in this report is based on a survey of 303 qualified respondents. Figures detail the demographics of the respondent base, including individual respondents current job and server virtualization environment and strategy knowledge/responsibility, as well as respondent organizations total number of employees, primary industry, annual revenue, number of production servers, and percent of x86 servers virtualized to date. Respondents by Server Virtualization Environment and Strategy Knowledge Respondents familiarity with their organizations server virtualization environments is shown in Figure 1. Figure 1. Survey Respondents, by Familiarity with Organizations Server Virtualization Environment and Strategy To what extent do you have day-to-day knowledge of and/or familiarity with your organization s server virtualization environment and strategy including topics such as total number of virtual machines, percent of virtual machines running in a production environment, and hypervisor(s) deployed? (Percent of respondents, N=303) I have a good level of knowledge/familiarity, 35% I have a high level of knowledge/familiarity, 65% Respondents by Job Responsibility Respondents current job responsibility is shown in Figure 2. Figure 2. Survey Respondents Job Responsibility Which of the following best describes your current responsibility within your organization? (Percent of respondents, N=303) IT staff, 9% IT management, 41% Senior IT management (e.g., CIO, VP of IT, Director of IT, etc.), 50%

6 Respondents by Number of Employees The number of employees in respondents organizations is shown in Figure 3. Figure 3. Survey Respondents, by Number of Employees How many total employees does your organization have worldwide? (Percent of respondents, N=303) 20,000 or more, 23% 250 to 499, 15% 10,000 to 19,999, 9% 500 to 999, 20% 5,000 to 9,999, 12% 2,500 to 4,999, 1,000 to 2,499, 13% Respondents by Industry Respondents were asked to identify their organization s primary industry. In total, ESG received completed, qualified responses from individuals in 19 distinct vertical industries, plus an Other category. Respondents were then grouped into the broader categories shown in Figure 4. Figure 4. Survey Respondents, by Industry What is your organization s primary industry? (Percent of respondents, N=303) Business Services (accounting, consulting, legal, etc.), Communications & Media, 7% Other, 19% Government (Federal/National, State/Province/Local), 8% Retail/Wholesale, Manufacturing, 20% Health Care, 12% Financial (banking, securities, insurance), 18%

7 Respondents by Annual Revenue Respondent organizations annual revenue is shown in Figure 5. Figure 5. Survey Respondents, by Annual Revenue What is your organization s total annual revenue ($US)? (Percent of respondents, N=303) 20% 18% 1 14% 12% 8% 4% 2% 0% Less than $50 million $50 million to $ million 18% $100 million to $ million $500 million to $ million 18% $1 billion to $4.999 billion 8% $5 billion to $9.999 billion 11% 15% $10 billion $20 billion to $ or more billion 5% Not applicable (e.g., public sector, non-profit) Respondents by Number of Production Servers The number of production servers operated worldwide by respondents IT organizations is shown in Figure 6. Figure 6. Survey Respondents, by Number of Production Servers Approximately how many production servers (whether physical or virtual) are supported worldwide by your IT organization? (Percent of respondents, N=303) 1 14% 15% 15% 14% 14% 12% 8% 8% 9% 4% 2% 0% Less than to to to to to 1,000 1,001 to 2,500 2,501 to 5,000 More than 5,000

8 Respondents by Percentage of Severs Virtualized The percentage of respondent organizations x86 servers virtualized to date is shown in Figure 7. Figure 7. Survey Respondents, by Percentage of x86 Servers Virtualized 18% 1 14% 12% 8% 4% 2% 0% Of all the potential x86 servers in your organization that can be virtualized, approximately what percentage of these systems has actually been virtualized to date? (Percent of respondents, N=303) 15% 21% to 30% 14% 31% to 40% 13% 41% to 50% 14% 14% 51% to 60% 61% to 70% 1 71% to 80% 81% to 90% 91% to 100% Respondents by Hypervisor Strategy Respondent organizations hypervisor strategies are shown in Figure 8. Figure 8. Survey Respondents, by Hypervisor Strategy Which of the following statements best describes your organization s server virtualization strategy? (Percent of respondents, N=303) We currently use multiple hypervisors, but plan to standardize on one, 5% We currently use multiple hypervisors and plan to continue doing so, 31% Don t know, 1% We have standardized on a single hypervisor, 39% We currently use one hypervisor, but we plan to support additional hypervisors, 24%

9 Respondents by IT Purchase Pattern ESG created a company psychographic profile by capturing respondents views on their organizations purchasing patterns for IT products and services (see Figure 8). Figure 9. Survey Respondents, by Purchasing Pattern for IT Products and Services Generally speaking, how would you describe your organization s purchasing patterns for IT products and services? (Percent of respondents, N=540) Laggard consumers we don t really stay on top of technology trends and tend to make investments only after those technologies have been widely accepted in the market, 9% Average consumers we stay on top of technology trends but generally wait to purchase related products until they have proven acceptance in the market, 69% Don t know/no opinion, 2% Leading-edge consumers we stay on top of the most current technology trends and purchase related products as soon as they are available, 20%

10 Contents List of Figures... 3 List of Tables... 3 Executive Summary... 4 Report Conclusions... 4 Introduction... 5 Research Objectives... 5 Research Findings... 6 Private Cloud Environments... 6 The Increasing Usage of Integrated Computing Platforms Conclusion Research Implications for Technology Vendors Research Implications for IT Professionals Research Methodology Respondent Demographics Respondents by Server Virtualization Environment and Strategy Knowledge Respondents by Job Responsibility Respondents by Number of Employees Respondents by Industry Respondents by Annual Revenue Respondents by Number of Production Servers Respondents by Percentage of Severs Virtualized Respondents by Hypervisor Strategy Respondents by IT Purchase Pattern... 24

11 List of Figures Figure 1. Use of Private Cloud Infrastructure... 6 Figure 2. Use of Private Cloud Infrastructure, by IT Purchasing Pattern... 8 Figure 3. Transition to Private Cloud Computing... 9 Figure 4. Most Important Attribute of a Private Cloud Infrastructure... 9 Figure 5. Organizations Rate Progress in the Essential Characteristics of Cloud Computing Figure 6. Private Cloud Deployment Software Strategy: Current versus Potential Users Figure 7. Private Cloud Deployment Hardware Strategy: Current versus Potential Users Figure 8. Usage of Integrated Computing Platforms Figure 9. Current Integrated Computing Platform Users According to Private Cloud Deployment Status Figure 10. Usage of Integrated Computing Platforms, by Stage of Private Cloud Deployment Figure 11. Reasons for Deploying/Planning to Deploy Integrated Computing Platforms Figure 12. Benefits Realized by Deploying Integrated Computing Platforms Figure 13. Concerns About Deploying an Integrated Computing Platform, Potential Adopters versus Non-adopters Figure 14. Survey Respondents, by Familiarity with Organizations Server Virtualization Environment and Strategy Figure 15. Survey Respondents Job Responsibility Figure 16. Survey Respondents, by Number of Employees Figure 17. Survey Respondents, by Industry Figure 18. Survey Respondents, by Annual Revenue Figure 19. Survey Respondents, by Number of Production Servers Figure 20. Survey Respondents, by Percentage of x86 Servers Virtualized Figure 21. Survey Respondents, by Hypervisor Strategy Figure 22. Survey Respondents, by Purchasing Pattern for IT Products and Services List of Tables Table 1. Use of Private Cloud Infrastructure, by Production Servers and Virtual Machines... 7 All trademark names are property of their respective companies. Information contained in this publication has been obtained by sources The Enterprise Strategy Group (ESG) considers to be reliable but is not warranted by ESG. This publication may contain opinions of ESG, which are subject to change from time to time. This publication is copyrighted by The Enterprise Strategy Group, Inc. Any reproduction or redistribution of this publication, in whole or in part, whether in hard-copy format, electronically, or otherwise to persons not authorized to receive it, without the express consent of The Enterprise Strategy Group, Inc., is in violation of U.S. copyright law and will be subject to an action for civil damages and, if applicable, criminal prosecution. Should you have any questions, please contact ESG Client Relations at

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