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10 Signs It's Time to Upgrade your IT Infrastructure

By Ines Marjanovic

Since its beginning days in the ‘90s—lovingly coined the “wild, wild west” of IT—3-tier architecture has been a business staple. And while it was revolutionary for its time, it doesn’t have the scalability, flexibility, or agility modern organizations need to stay competitive in their markets. To keep IT out of the datacenter and in the front lines of innovation, businesses can’t rely on “good enough” infrastructure.

Whether you’re ready for a powerful, future-forward infrastructure, need a push to get there, or want arguments you can pass along to your team, read on to find out if you’re overdue for an infrastructure revamp.

1. You’re (still!) paying for virtualization

Virtualization is foundational technology, and for many IT leaders, it’s a non-negotiable business necessity. IT infrastructure can offer virtualization as an add-on, but with the unquestionable importance of virtualization, why are vendors charging a premium for it?

Well, because they can. But you don’t have to fall for it. Virtualization should be included in your infrastructure—point blank. Check out this whitepaper for more details on the why and how, but here’s the take-away: IT necessities shouldn’t be treated as expensive add-ons.

2. You spend more weekends in the datacenter than at home

Thinking about going to the lake this weekend? Sorry, gotta stay inside for an upgrade. Want to go to the beach? Nope—a fire drill needs your attention. If your infrastructure is holding you back from you-time, consider this the reddest of red flags.

Did you know 76% of folks who’ve adopted hyperconvergence have, on average, 40 hour or shorter work weeks? The self-healing power of hyperconvergence eliminates the need for a ‘round-the-clock babysitter. That means your weekend stays yours.

3. You’ve gotten bill “sticker shock” one too many times

When you first opted for your 3-tier architecture, chances are part of the allure was the attractive price. But by now, you’re probably all too familiar with these fees:

  • Separate support costs
  • Support teams
  • Licensing costs
  • Upgrade costs
  • Administrative costs
  • Power and cooling costs
  • Datacenter footprint costs
  • Hiring specialists
  • Storage provisioning costs

In the long run, keeping your legacy environment up and running can eat away at your finite IT budget. That’s why it’s important to look ahead—not just right now—when it comes to your infrastructure costs. Play around with this interactive TCO/ROI calculator to find out how much you could save on hyperconvergence instead. (Spoiler: It’s a lot!)

4. You rely on specialists to wrangle every odd and end

If your IT environment is more complex than a layer cake recipe, it’s time for an upgrade. Like a properly frosted layer cake requires expert hands, overly complex, multi-siloed infrastructure needs specialists just to keep it running.

In an ideal situation, you’d turn specialists to generalists—and save money in the process. When you upgrade to the one-click simplicity of hyperconvergence, anyone from any level of your team can operate it.

5. You’re having a hard time retaining your team

Have you checked up on your employees’ workloads lately? Are their days full of lengthy, yawn-inducing infrastructure management tasks? Tedium can drive your staff away, and it’s no wonder many organizations on legacy infrastructure struggle with employee retention.

Hyperconverged infrastructure just works. It’s fortified with automation and self-service, so your team can focus on engaging, exciting, business-moving projects that challenge and re-skill them. Win/win!

6. You’re not sure where to look during a fire drill

With legacy architecture, you’re operating with separate servers, storage networks, and storage arrays, not to mention the complex mess of silos, racks, servers, cables, separate management interfaces, multiple vendors, and shelfware.

So if something goes awry in that system, do you know exactly where to look? Or do you have to call up different teams and managers just to find out what went wrong?

This isn’t the case with hyperconverged infrastructure. It’s your one-and-done way to melt down that mess into a single platform, streamlining operations by consolidating key elements, reducing your datacenter footprint, and letting you take control of your entire environment through one simple interface.

7. You’re constantly playing fortune teller with your resources

“In 5 years, what do you think your resource consumption will be?” Guess too high, and you’re left with wasted resources. Guess too low, and you’re stuck rationing your resources. Guess just correctly, and you’ll still have resources waiting on standby until you finally use them up in 5 years.

If your infrastructure demands clairvoyance out of you, it’s time to reevaluate your strategy. Hyperconverged infrastructure (the foundation of an enterprise cloud) gives you the chance to embrace a pay-as-you-grow model, letting you purchase and add on nodes when you need them. And that’s how it should be!

8. You’re dedicating 80% of your time to IT management

...And leaving a measly 20% for innovation. On top of being tedious, time-consuming, and specialist-necessitating, whittling down your innovation bucket leaves room for your competitors to get ahead.

That’s why your infrastructure should deliver automation, self-service, and pay-as-you-grow scaling, so you can focus on just about anything other than babysitting.

9. You dream of the clouds...but can’t get there

Whether you daydream about public, private, or hybrid clouds, legacy infrastructure simply isn’t equipped to take you there. Why? The Enterprise Cloud for Dummies eBook puts it best.

Since legacy infrastructure is based on scale-up storage, cloudifying your datacenter is impossible. “At a certain point, the shared components—controllers and the network fabric—get overwhelmed. It’s inevitable. The question is not if this will happen, but when. As a result, many scale‐up storage systems are bundled with spec sheets that tell customers that they can grow only so far before they have to add more shared components. Adding these components also adds complexity to the system.”

Your infrastructure should be able to leverage scale-out storage and maintain data locality. If you want your datacenter to be cloud-ready, hyperconvergence your key to expanding without limits—and without losing data locality.

10. You walk into the datacenter and immediately want to walk out

Messy cables. Endless servers. Proprietary hardware. Refrigerator-sized boxes. While your datacenter makes a great place for a game of hide-and-seek, that level of complexity is not what you want in your datacenter. If that’s exactly what you see when you walk in, it’s time to tidy up.

With 89% of organizations claiming their IT environment is too complex, it’s time to turn to a hyperconverged alternative to reduce management overhead, prioritize automation, and deliver business-critical services in a single click.

Now let’s get everyone on board!

Now that you’re equipped with 10 talking points, it’s time to make the case for hyperconvergence to the rest of your team. Take a look at Building a Business Case for HCI for more compelling justifications you can take to your team.

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