Wheel of Fortune: Don’t let your data backup services land on bankrupt

Data backup is one of those daily tasks that resembles Wheel of Fortune. If a backup fails occasionally or you forget to swap media once in a while, the odds are good that the spinner on your wheel of fortune won’t cost you anything. Until the day it settles on “bankrupt,” and all those occasional backup glitches will come back to haunt you.

Piecing together transactional data is a major hassle. But the value of lost data goes way beyond that now. Analytics are making fast inroads into every part of the value chain. As they do, the value of a company’s non-transactional data grows. All that info you’ve been using to serve customers more effectively, operate more efficiently and develop innovative new products—gone. Losing that kind of data is like burning stacks of cash. When it’s gone, you can’t get it back. That can seriously complicate your day.

Trying to decide how much backup capacity you need isn’t completely straightforward either. It’s a wasted effort if you keep too little and miss something important, so many companies tend to err on the side of caution. And they err more than they realize. When we ask clients about their backup capacity, many estimate they’re using 80% or more of their capacity. When we survey their actual consumption, utilization rates average around 54% of their storage footprint. The other half sits idle.

There’s a better way to do this. Instead of guessing at what you need, spending more than you should, and having to maintain a vigil to insure it’s working, take a look at the compelling BackUp as a Service (BUaaS) offerings that are becoming more prevalent. When you harness the power of virtual infrastructure, you subtract many of the issues that make backup a hassle and you get a more reliable service that you don’t need to think about. Here are four benefits of BUaaS that deserve consideration:

* BUaaS always offers the right capacity. Companies routinely overestimate their backup capacity needs because budget approval happens only periodically. Procurement can take six months or more so, when you budget for backup capacity, you make sure you have more than enough. With BUaaS, you don’t need to sweat that. Capacity can be added or subtracted as needed, so you never have too much or too little.

* It’s always up to date. The problem with dedicated backup infrastructure isn’t just the money you have parked in a rack. Buying backup means you’ve bought into a level of performance and features for the duration of time you own the hardware. If your needs change, you’re effectively held hostage to a decision you made earlier. Because BUaaS is highly virtualized, it experiences ongoing improvement as both the infrastructure is refreshed and as new versions of the backup service code are released.

* It’s more flexible. Backup as a Service allows you to dial up compressions and deduplication if you need to expand storage, or adjust for more speed if you need higher performance. You don’t need to change hardware, just settings. And, if your needs change, adjustments are just a mouse click away.

* You get more expertise as part of the bundle. While the advantages might not be readily apparent, the additional staffing and add-on services included in BUaaS offerings make the service more reliable and less expensive. The growing intelligence of BUaaS solutions helps separate minor issues from those that can truly affect the quality of your backups. Automation enables the provider to offer services with fewer people that are scalable, predictable and less expensive than maintaining the same capacity in a fixed physical environment.

Chris-Flaesch-headshotChris Flaesch is General Manager of Hosting Solutions at DXC. He has more than 25 years of experience in information technology and applications software in operations, sales and executive rolls at Oracle and Control Data Corporation. Prior to joining DXC, Chris founded and was the CEO of a successful electronic payments software company, Govolution Inc., which he sold to a private equity firm in 2008. After the sale and until joining DXC he worked as an operations executive for a number of private equity and venture capital firms within their portfolio companies. Connect with him on LinkedIn.

Kristen-Sawyer-headshotKristen Sawyer is Storage Services Offering Owner at DXC. She has over 12 year’s experience in project/program management from her time in the Delivery Organization. Currently her role consists of creating and enhancing offering products in the Cloud and Platform Service offering family under Hosting Solutions, a global team that focuses on transform to hybrid infrastructure and making the most of legacy infrastructure. Connect with her on LinkedIn.

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