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Survey results: IT managers want automation

May 01, 20033 mins
Data Center

* Initial findings of Enterprise Management Associates' automation surveys

Thanks to all who participated in our survey on automation. You may remember that Enterprise Management Associates recently ran two automation surveys in tandem, one addressing storage management issues and the other aimed at enterprise management. The surveys were closely coupled, and make for interesting reading.

A colleague and I are finishing the analysis of the data, and the results are beginning to take shape.  We have noted a few interesting differences in automation views between storage managers and enterprise managers, but it is clear that there are more similarities than dissimilarities in their thinking.

Here is some of what we have learned so far.

Is automation of storage management tools on IT managers’ radar screens?


An astonishingly large percentage of the respondents to the survey said that when they evaluated storage management products, automation capabilities played an important role in their assessments.  Even more meaningful, about one in four now report that the capability to automate certain management functions plays a critical role in their final decisions.

What this means is that storage managers have much higher expectations of their vendors than they did even a year ago.  Significantly, this appears to be more than just a difference in quantity of services.  It is the difference in the way services are delivered.

Much of what both groups of managers are looking for these days seems to have a lot to do with leveragability: leveraging existing staff, existing skill sets, and existing hardware and software assets.  All this, of course, is in an effort to maximize existing investment.  Many managers now see that automating management functions is the obvious path

to achieving that goal.

The survey zeroed in on why managers are interested in automating their shops, what they are willing to automate (and what they won’t), and where they are looking for help. I’ll go into more of the results next week.

Before I sign off today, I want to offer a note of apology.  I have tried over the almost two years that I have been writing this newsletter to answer within 24 hours every e-mail from readers.  I enjoy these communications, and have learned much from many of you.  During the last few months however, because of time constraints imposed by my other responsibilities, and due also to a big influx of incoming letters, I have failed miserably in responding in a timely fashion. Mea maxima culpa.  My apologies to my correspondents.  I promise to try to do better by you in the future.

Of course, if one of you can suggest a software package that can automate the process of e-mail response …