The business case for data center automation

The business case for data center automation

According to Forrester, the three-year, risk-adjusted value of Cisco UCS Director is $2.3 million.

It’s difficult to consider fundamental changes to longstanding data center environments and processes without knowing what kind of benefits and efficiencies will be gained. Beyond vendor promises, most companies want to understand the benefits, costs, and risks of any IT transformation—in real dollars and cents.

“Countless companies have benefited from data center automation,” says Joann Starke, senior marketing manager at Cisco. “The technology is mature and proven, but change can be daunting. Especially when you don’t know what life will be like on the other side.”

For these reasons, Cisco commissioned Forrester Consulting to conduct a Total Economic Impact (TEI) study1 that quantifies the ROI of deploying Cisco UCS® Director.

  • Built on the Intel® Xeon® processor-based Cisco Unified Computing System, Cisco UCS Director automates IT provisioning, configuration, and security—across tenants, resource pools, and cloud environments—for greater business agility as well as significant time and cost savings.
  • It allows both Cisco and third-party systems to be managed from a single, centralized interface.  

Forrester interviewed four organizations with multiple years’ experience using the tool.1 Prior to launching Cisco UCS Director, those organizations provisioned their physical and virtual machines manually, often requiring coordination among networking, storage, and compute resources—amounting to weeks of time dedicated to completing the task.

Their IT operations teams were already under pressure to meet the demands of a growing business, the TEI study explains, with shrinking budgets and resources. Manual processes hamstrung these teams, who saw business stakeholders exploring faster, more efficient public cloud offerings.

“If IT teams don’t evolve, they may lose a measure of relevance or even be replaced,” Starke warns. “Data center automation allows them to become faster, more efficient drivers of business agility and success.”

Increasing speed and agility

After implementing Cisco UCS Director, the IT teams Forrester interviewed shaved weeks off provisioning times and reduced time spent managing their environments. They gained efficiency, freeing up resources to think more strategically and further enhance their impact on the business.

“Many interviewees focused their efforts on provisioning new environments, while others leveraged the library of orchestrations to quickly automate management tasks,” the TEI study explains. “All interviewees cited significant time savings across their entire IT operations teams.”

What does this mean in dollars and cents?

  • According to Forrester, the three-year, risk-adjusted ROI of deploying Cisco UCS Director is 106 percent for a company with 200 physical servers and 6000 virtual machines.
  • After costs, the net present value of the implementation is a whopping $2.3 million.

“[Cisco] UCS Director delivers speed and agility by removing slow manual processes, freeing up IT resource time,” the study states. “Automating end-to-end provisioning across multivendor, physical, and virtual environments improves business agility and allows organizations to scale.”

1 “The Total Economic Impact of Cisco’s UCS Director,” a commissioned study conducted by Forrester Consulting on behalf of Cisco, February 2017

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