IBM rolls out optimization strategy

IBM recently announced its IT optimization strategy, which, it says, will help companies better align their IT infrastructure with their business processes. The end result -- streamlining a company to provide the best services at a minimal cost.

"A lot of companies either focus on cost or value," comments Damen Bassett, IBM's business development manager. "Should the company focus on value, its costs tend to rise, and, should a company focus on costs, the value of its service decreases," he adds.

Bassett believes that a company should take a holistic view, focusing on both these aspects, but in order to do so, it needs a clear understanding of its IT infrastructure, thereby knowing where costs can be reduced.

The first step in getting the IT optimization ball rolling is to gather and collate all a company's data. This includes anything from application consumption data, organization data, support costs, leasing of equipment costs, hardware utilization and bandwidth utilization. "Many companies already have this data, but they do not know how it fits together, and do not know how they can use this to better streamline themselves," explains Bassett.

Once all the data has been collected, IBM is able to analyze where costs can be cut, but without influencing the value of the service the company offers. "Our optimization strategy pulls on all of our expertise," comments Bassett. "Our technical team will be able to arrive at a company's data center, and advise on things such as load balancing and server consolidation, whilst another team will be able to advise that same company on leasing and outsourcing agreements. The end result will be a company offering a better service whilst spending less."

According to IBM, IT optimization is on the increase both locally and abroad. Bassett attributes this to the fact that the effective application of technology often determines whether companies succeed or fail. Reducing costs, enhancing business capabilities, increasing customer satisfaction, and improving performance across the enterprise, have thus become leading IT imperatives.

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