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Investing in Good Data Infrastructure Can Help Tech Enterprises Budget TCO Better

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By Aveekshith Bushan, Vice President – Asia Pacific & Japan, Aerospike

The advent of 5G, increase in adoption of connected devices and the need for instant results for consumers are compelling businesses across sectors to transform. Over the last few years, this digital explosion fuelled an increase in IT spending. The subsequent slowdown due to supply chain issues, caused by the same pandemic that drove historic increases in digital usage, has companies re-examining how they measure growth.
Despite the economic slowdown, data usage continues to flourish. By 2025, International Data Corporation (IDC) expects 175 billion zettabytes of data. Organizations are receiving data from hundreds of sources, and this data continues to grow at over 30% year on year. This means an ever-increasing demand for IT infrastructure and applications to process, use, and store this data. Traditional digital transformation technologies must evolve to keep up with this increase.

Businesses today need quick outcomes that are reliable and based on real-time data. As a result, data is being generated and used at a rate that has never been seen before. Online real-time data uploads are at an all-time high, and consumer demand for exceptional digital experiences keeps growing proportionally.

To meet this growth and the demands of consumers who expect real-time results from online queries, companies must modernize their infrastructure and applications for greater operational efficiencies. Done diligently, this should lead to a lower Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) despite a massive, global increase in the consumption and processing of data at a global scale.

Why TCO is important for enterprises
Gartner defines TCO as a ‘comprehensive assessment of information technology or other costs across enterprise boundaries over time.’ In the IT world, TCO includes hardware and software acquisition, management and support, communications, end-user expenses, and the opportunity cost of downtime, training, and other productivity losses.
TCO is employed to track the lifetime expense to buy, deploy, use, and retire a product. As a result, it provides a more realistic measurement than simply purchase price alone as it allows one to understand the value of the investment over time and adjust accordingly.

Today, many companies are measuring success by how much real-time data an enterprise can utilize across a diverse range of use cases while maintaining their operating margins. Logically, this may seem a bit farfetched, as operational costs should increase as data processing and storage increases exponentially.

This is why today’s modern real-time databases must process huge volumes of data in a predictable manner, so that the billionth customer has the same experience as the first customer. As more and more users are catered to on these platforms, it is important that the costs of doing so, does not escalate at the same rate. With a lot of the data platforms in the market, server sprawl is a genuine issue, and it is one of the reasons IT costs spiral out of control. It is important that platforms are chosen where there is an optimization of server usage with more and more data, while keeping the costs low.

Achieving TCO in today’s economy
As 2023 begins amid an unstable global economy, enterprises will closely monitor spending to avoid freezing budgets. Many are shifting focus on deriving more value from each digital transaction instead of relying on quarterly revenue to measure growth.

An organization can aim at reducing TCO through simple but effective measures, and some key changes can be achieved through:

• Migrating data to the cloud: Moving to the cloud can be a tedious process, but the benefits that follow the one-time shift are undeniable. Going virtual means reduced costs on physical assets, real-time security monitoring, and lowered utility bills. Many companies are employing a hybrid model of on-premise and cloud servers, with a database platform that works across all these environments, across Physical, virtualized and containerised environments.

• Investing in energy-efficient infrastructure: A modern data infrastructure provides greater energy efficiencies, leading to lesser carbon footprint. Few things to look at while considering a data platform are things like sustained latency at load, transaction rates handled and price, availability guarantees of platform and performance ratio for the solution

• Removing expired and old technologies: With every passing year, legacy technologies increase in TCO. And it’s common for vendors to stop supporting some older technologies, which increases costs to the enterprise user. Replacing old technologies with more modern platforms that can optimize TCO across the organization, is one way to mitigate this risk

Futureproofing against rising TCO
There is no reason to believe that the explosion of data and connected devices in India is going to slow. So, creating an efficient modern database is paramount to winning in today’s hyper-competitive business environment. Examining your IT infrastructure now is critical as according to Gartner, infrastructure and operations make up to 60% of IT costs.

A modern database should scale to petabytes with predictable performance, low latency, and at affordable cost. One way to do this is to process transactional/streaming/real-time data as well as historical data with Flash Optimised Architecture models, where performance to cost ratio is very high, and with Dynamic Cluster Management to ensure continuous uptime. This unique configuration works to reduce the number of servers required to process and store data while remaining performant and available. The result is a reduction in infrastructure costs and a reduction in carbon footprint too!

The by-product of lower TCO: Greener Planet
The IT industry’s expanding carbon footprint can be attributed to increased daily usage and production of IT infrastructure across the globe. The impact of software on hardware in relation to energy usage was highlighted in a recent IEEE paper.

Businesses should be able to accomplish “more with less”, satisfy sustainability goals, lower TCO, and continue to grow while decreasing their carbon footprint. This leads to a reduced need for server footprint, with over 80% reduction in TCO. A lower TCO can also offer a framework for evaluating how organizations manage and achieve their sustainability goals.

The world is rapidly realizing the importance of taking action today to build a sustainable future. Leading companies in India like HDFC Bank, Airtel, Mahindra & Mahindra, JSW Energy, ITC, and others including Indian railways have declared their intentions to achieve carbon neutrality as highlighted by ORF. These steps from large organizations set an example for up and coming businesses to follow. With modern infrastructure and data platforms, it is possible to scale up infrastructure, while reducing TCO, server footprint and carbon usage.

The creation and use of data is drastically growing across industry sectors and so is the need for a highly scalable, reliable and performant Database that can lower TCO and carbon footprint. Future-proofing an organization against rising TCO and meeting these demands today, is a need whose time has come!

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