7 Must-Knows When Considering a Data Centre Solution

Aampliy_Blog_PRIMERGYInformation and communications technology downtime and delays are on average costing businesses $9000 per minute ($540,000 per hour) according to the Ponemon Institute. The financial services sector took top honours with nearly a million dollars in costs per outage.

But it’s not all bad news.

The cost of fixing the problem is relatively small, as a little investment in increasing the reliability of ICT will provide ROI by reducing productivity and revenue losses – and Investment in the Australian data centre services market is predicted to grow at a CAGR of 12.4% in the next 5 years.

This is essential in today’s fast world of big data which is leaving old ICT systems further and further behind. With Australian enterprises putting an increasing focus on scalability, standards, and security, legacy systems just don’t cut it. Combine this with the fact that companies are lacking the expert knowledge and services to keep up with swift IT advances and you have a landscape full of laggards, not leaders.

As such, one of the most challenging aspects faced by the CIOs is how to keep their IT strategy aligned with the business strategy, and their aged data centres upgraded and running with efficiency.

Improving overall data centre functionality and performance calls for modernising your existing data centre through the latest technologies, infrastructure and services. A data centre which is highly responsive, agile and sustainable, reduces operational costs, risk and is future proofed for expansion.

Your data centre has the potential to drive your business forward and help you be a leader in this fast-paced world. Here are our top 7 must-knows when considering a data centre solution:

  1. Scalability

One of the major benefits you can bring to your business with a robust data centre solution is the ability to add data storage capacity to meet your emerging business requirements.  This means you pay only for the capacity you need, knowing that you can easily scale to meet increasing data volume demands.

  1. Security

Maintaining the confidentiality, integrity and availability of information is critical to the success of your organisation. Place your information in a facility that offers state-of-the-art digital surveillance and security equipment for prevention of unauthorised access. Consider measures, such as biometric access points, 24-hour on-site security controls, integrated access management and CCTV systems.

  1. Reliability & High Availability

Reliability and high availability are not the same. For example, a reliable system that takes a long time to fix if something fails does not have high availability. Data centres that have both are those that are engineered to international standards of excellence ensuring appropriate controls are in place.

Keep these key national standards for data centre facilities in mind when looking at your options:

  • Information Security Management Systems (ISMS) ISO 27001
  • Government Security Standards
  • Environmental Management System ISO 14001
  • ITIL IT Service Management
  • ISO 9001 Quality System
  1. Energy Efficiency

Having reliable and high-performance computing power is a crucial aspect of running your business effectively and competitively. It is also highly energy intensive. In Australia, the NABERS Energy rating for data centres can help CIOs, IT Managers and tenants assess energy performance for an outsourced data centre reliably and as a comparison point with other data centres within Australia.

This provides a way for data centre energy efficiency to be externally validated against a standard by an independent government assessor.

  1. Services

Choose a flexible provider who can offer professional expertise, support and services as your business and circumstance change, including:

  • Co-location services
  • Add-on services – On-site services, such as remote hands and media management
  • Project services – Relocation, installation and consolidation from your premises or third party location into a managed data centre
  • Managed services – End-to-end delivery of services and support.
  1. Servers

Servers are the big users of energy in a data centre which is why you achieve greater efficiency by running those that consume less power but still provide best-in-class performance. Your data centre provider can run theirs, or you can supply your own for use in a facility, but it’s critical to opt for servers which will allow you to deliver at the speed your enterprise demands. Bookmark this reference to Fujitsu PRIMERGY servers as a good starting point.

  1. Location

If you’re considering a co-location data centre solution, the location of the facility (or facilities) you will use is an integral factor. If someone from your company will be upgrading or servicing your equipment when needed, you need easy access to this location. Another aspect to keep in mind when assessing locations is to investigate the likelihood of natural disasters and what redundancy operations are in place.

Keep pace with the world moving at a digital speed and be the leader, not the laggard. Fast track your data centre modernisation by understanding the key transformation factors.

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Hackathon 2016 – Where Ideas Become A Commercial Reality…

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In December 2016, Fujitsu Australia and New Zealand ran its first Hackathon. The exercise was a great opportunity for employees who would not normally work together, to join as a team and contribute ideas towards the commercialisation of a unique digital product. Over the course of two days, the 10 teams battled it out for prizes, utilizing the Fujitsu platform, RunMyProcess to develop their digital products and was an opportunity to demonstrate profound thought leadership.

Each team consisted of the following roles:

The Organiser – This is the team project manager, who is responsible for organising the team to help achieve its objectives. The Thinker – The ‘creative’ person who focusses on making the product appealing to customers. The Hacker – The strong, technically savvy team member that helps to bring the idea to life. The Capitalist – The person responsible for taking the idea to market and generating revenue. The Realist – The person who can manage the commercial aspects of the solution.

Continue reading

David Quinlan – from Defence to the world of IT

David Quinlan, Programs Director, Success Engagement at Fujitsu, made the move from a Defence career to civilian life nearly ten years ago and has not looked back. In the next of our series of interviews, David tells us about his career history prior to joining the business, making the transition from life in the military to one as a civilian and how working at Fujitsu has had a positive impact on his working and personal life. Read his story below:

David Quinlan defence

“I have worked for Fujitsu coming up on 10 years and in a variety of roles within the government vertical, specifically within Defence. Starting off in the business as an Operations Manager (Service Delivery) to my current role as a Programs Director, Success Engagement in Defence, I manage three portfolios including IT service management, military platform integration and Defence joint simulation development. I never have two days the same, which is the beauty of my role, some of the key tasks involve portfolio management and trying to address the traditional ways of managing projects.

Continue reading

The Sky Really Is The Limit!

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Fraser Corsan is no ordinary Fujitsu employee – he is recognized as one of the world’s most experienced wingsuit jumpers with over 16 years of experience. So what exactly is ‘wingsuit jumping’? Basically it’s the #1 extreme sport for adrenaline, speed, thrill and 3-dimensional freedom.

Corsan plans to smash the existing records of the highest altitude jumped, longest time flown, fastest speed and furthest distance, all made possible through Project Cirrus and Fujitsu. Corsan will be using innovative technology, developed by a team of industry specialists supported by Fujitsu.

It is crazy to think that 16 years ago, Corsan was one of only 15 wingsuit jumpers globally. In that time, he has flown the distance of New York to Mumbai, having jumped over 1300 times!

Corsan plans to raise A$1.62M for SSAFA – a charity close to his heart, having worked closely with the UK Armed Forces for the majority of his career. The hope is that these proceeds will provide support to volunteer caseworkers, welfare services for veterans and service leavers transitioning out of the forces.

Project Cirrus exemplifies the Fujitsu brand, evident through the power of innovative technology paired with human effort, to achieve revolutionary results.

 

What the short video below of Fraser’s wingsuit world records attempt.

Demystifying ‘Fast IT’

As the pace of business changes at an ever-increasing rate, there are increasing demands on IT systems to support continual change. From an IT perspective we need to be ‘on the front foot’ to anticipate the needs of the business. One of the terms we will hear more regularly is that of ‘Fast IT’. We caught up with two of our leading architects, Ramy Ibrahim and Charles Ponniah to get a further insight into the concept of Fast IT and how organisations can embrace it.

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From Left: Ramy Ibrahim, Charles Ponniah.

Can you explain what FAST IT is?

Ramy: Fast IT is a relatively new term. It’s about the new way of delivering IT services. It is a way of thinking that will enable rapid innovation in a business. It’s about providing that experience that consumers traditionally get, that corporate IT departments always seem to slow down.

Why is it important to move to Fast IT?

Ramy: It is about the user experience. If the user experience isn’t up to the standards that users expect, they will find a way around it. The key thing is making sure you meet the internal metrics such as security governance and delivery method, but also ensuring that it delivers a good user experience.

Charles: It is also about enablement. At Fujitsu, our focus is on getting people onto the technology faster to enable them to produce things in a more creative or faster way.

How do organisations stand to benefit from adopting Fast IT?

Charles It is all about unleashing ability, efficiency, productivity and creativity. It is about having the ability and capabilities to outpace your competition. Late last year we conducted a “Hackathon” with our employees from across Australia and New Zealand. As a result of this concentrated effort over two days we identified a number of viable products that we could look to commercialise. This is a great example of how organisations can benefit from this approach rather than the traditional models of development. Continue reading

Australia to act SMARTer with Global e-Sustainability

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Fujitsu and Telstra recently launched the SMARTer2030 Report: Australian Opportunity for ICT Enabled Emission Reductions. Based on the Global e-Sustainability Initiative (GeSI) SMARTer2030 report, the study shows that ICT can support the Australian Government to surpass its carbon reduction target.

Lee Stewart, Head of Sustainability in the Oceania region, was interviewed by GeSI about the report, what opportunities it revealed and what the next steps for Australia are.

He revealed that Smart Agriculture technologies are well positioned to help farmers build efficiency and resilience against a changing climate, safeguarding Australia’s $53 billion a year agricultural sector, as well as saving precious water resources.  He also addressed how ICT can deliver economic and social benefits by improving equity of access in education and healthcare to Australians in rural and remote communities.  Lee highlights the fact that Australia can meet its carbon reduction targets by 2030 – just with fully deploying ICT that exists right now.

Lee identified three key factors in unlocking the potential of ICT to deliver economic, social and environmental benefits, on the GeSI blog.

Watch the Sky News Smart Money interview below, with Lee Stewart and Brad Freeman (VP, Business and Application Services) as they discuss the findings from the SMARTer2030 report.

Article by Blaise Porter – Fujitsu Sustainability Manager

 

 

Agile management changes the business

Solidfire_291116

The 20th century model of business management had anything of consequence being decided at the top. Big leaders appoint little leaders, competition for power is constricting change, work is assigned and control is paramount.

The trouble with this 20th-century model is that it’s 20th-century – it has trouble competing with agile 21st-century businesses. The 21st-century business is a fast adapter and customer centricity is the driver for change and a disrupter for growth.

The older model has the company at the centre, with customers in orbit to be manipulated. In contrast, the modern, agile business model has the customer at the heart with the company in orbit, looking for ways to delight the customer.

In the latter kind of business, everyone in the organisation understands how their work contributes to the focus on the customer.

In agile management:

  •  Leaders see themselves and act as enablers rather than controllers
  •  Work is coordinated through structured, customer-focused practices, not bureaucracy
  •  Leaders model transparency and continuous improvement
  •  Communication is open and conversational, rather than top-down and hierarchical.

Manufacturing is in the early stage of adopting agile management. However, this trend will speed up as physical products become more software-driven and part of the Internet of Things – more and more devices and appliances becoming cyber-connected.

In other sectors, the debate is already over, with attention on improving agile methodologies, learning how to apply them across different teams, and reconciling team goals, practices and values with company goals, values and practices.

One of the United Kingdom’s leading hotel, restaurant and coffee shop operators, which boasts 45,000 employees, recently upgraded its IT systems to become more agile.

The new system gave it a flexible platform, enabling the company to be responsive and adaptable to its market and to other business demands. As a result, its business systems are more easily and widely available and suffer less downtime, and the company is more efficient and productive.

At the heart of this success is the efficient management of data – the traditional data centre just couldn’t cut it.

Next generation data centres are leading the way in enabling agile business management and SolidFire, an all-flash array, is empowering enterprises to adapt to massive IT changes. Even as little as two years ago, solid disk providers didn’t see an all-flash system like SolidFire as a threat, because of its cost. But prices have fallen and are still falling, and all-flash storage offers powerful advantages.

It keeps up with radical change because it can be expanded with no downtime and no need for reconfiguration and it offers faster access to data.

Let’s compare a traditional system with SolidFire:

Traditional System SolidFire
Single tenant Multi-tenant
Isolated workloads Mixed workloads
Dedicated infrastructure Shared infrastructure
Scale-up Scale-out
Manual administration Automation

Next generation data storage has to be at the heart of making your business agile. Download our infographic to see how SolidFire can help you.

 

The new data storage model for radical IT innovation

Solidfire_251116You’ve undoubtedly heard about the Internet of Things (IoT), in which almost every device or appliance is connected to the Internet. The collective intelligence that can be gained from these devices will forever change the activities and lives of businesses and consumers everywhere.

It is probable that IoT will impact not just connected devices, but many devices that are unconnected yet still have a current running through them.

We’re not going to get into the details of that in this article, but the point is simply this: everything you’ve heard about the Fourth Industrial Revolution – like the explosion in IoT, cloud computing and Big Data – is likely to prove an understatement.

Recent research from Gartner shows that almost 50 percent of businesses have invested in Big Data initiatives, but most are not getting the best out of their expenditure. The reason: insufficient planning or structure around how to find what they need from the data, and how to best use it.

Given the pace and scale of technological change, that’s understandable. But what can you do about it?

Some traditional companies are now getting advice on how to revamp their IT systems and workplaces so they can leverage the vast computing resources of the Cloud – so they have a chance to keep up with newer, faster-moving businesses.

Businesses struggling to find what they need from huge information flows may take some encouragement from Google. The company has announced the development of an artificial intelligence (AI) engine that it says represents the biggest shift in computing since the appearance of the smartphone.

The company says its massive search database, which now holds about 17 billion facts, will help its AI engine answer queries.

But even when that kind of technology filters down to more general use, it will still be a poor idea to let AI deal with a random assortment of information. A modern, versatile storage system will be needed to provide the dedicated, blistering performance requirement to get the most benefit from any kind of search in an acceptable time frame – whether AI or something else.

Solidfire is a storage system ideal for businesses wanting to ease the transition to the Fourth Industrial Revolution. It’s an all-flash array system, meaning it has no spinning disks. This offers a number of major advantages:

  • Install only the capacity you need and expand at any time with no downtime and no reconfiguration
  • Ensure rapid data access: Input-output per second (IOPS) can range from terabytes to multiple petabytes
  • Have mixed node and protocol clusters.

In addition, Solidfire provides complete automation, guaranteed quality of service, data assurance (including self-healing drive and node rebuilds) and global efficiency.

Solidfire provides a solid foundation for manipulating and processing the data now being generated in the digital age. And when that foundation is solid, you can make good decisions with confidence – and gain an edge on those who continue to operate in a new world using outdated technology.

Make sure your business is ready. See the infographic here.

My journey from the frontline in Defence to one in IT.

Peter Traynor (2)

Peter Traynor, Service Desk Team Leader, ACT is the next employee in a short series of interviews where he tells us about his varied career history prior to joining the business, making the transition from life in the armed forces to one as a civilian and how working at Fujitsu has had a positive impact on both his working and personal life. Read his story below:

I have been working at Fujitsu for just over 13 months, starting off as a Service Desk Analyst and recently being promoted to Service Desk Team Leader. I am based at the ICT customer service desk in Mitchell, ACT. My typical day to day duties consist of managing my 12 person team, ensuring that they are adhering to their allotted time constraints and collectively that we are meeting our service level agreements.

Prior to making the move to Fujitsu, I have had an exciting and extremely varied career history, I worked in several industries including security and warehousing, before joining the defence forces when I was 27 as a Rifleman, where I served for six and a half years. I am still an active reservist.

I have to admit that I didn’t find the transition from military life to one as a civilian that difficult. The hardest part of the process was adjusting my expectations to suit the situation. My manager and the training team at Fujitsu were pivotal in helping me have a smooth transition, adjust to an IT environment and succeed in the role I’m currently in.

I love working for Fujitsu. What the company offers with regards to career development and training is unmatched across the industry. The people are another major contributing factor, overall a fantastic and extremely rewarding organisation to work for. I personally love being given the opportunity to recruit and train my team, watch them grow and move on to be successful in their relevant fields within the business.

Outside of work, I love to train, bike ride and bush walk. I am also an avid gamer who has dabbled in some programming. A career at Fujitsu allows me to enjoy all of these things in my personal life.

For more information on careers within Fujitsu Oceania, please visit: Fujitsu Careers.

 

The Big Data challenge has an answer in SolidFire

SolidfireIn 2014, about 35% of computer users accessed the cloud, according to the UK Office for National Statistics. That figure has since almost doubled and within three years, 86% of workloads are expected to be processed in cloud data centres.

The quantity of data is doubling every 18 months too and the forecasts are that data production will be 44 times greater in 2020 than it was in 2009. Individuals today create 70% of all data. Enterprises store 80%.

The World Economic Forum has identified six software and services megatrends and the Fourth Industrial Revolution is under way now.

The growth in Big Data is challenging with respect to finding what information is relevant to you, and making sense of it. This is part of the disruption that Big Data is at the heart of.

However, these challenges also present opportunities. For example, data analytics is leading to insights into virtually any field you can think of.

Not long ago a biotech company used data analytics to sort through GBs of data – leading them to isolate 23 optimal genes. And that led to the first gender-specific diagnostic tests for heart disease. Technologies such as SolidFire help to make developments such as these possible. Solidfire offers specific advantages for data storage requirements both now and in the future with the following attributes:

  • Agility: With SolidFire, enterprises can support specific solutions and adapt on the go to multiple workload environments, without affecting the performance of existing applications.
  • Reliability: A key requirement for next generation data centres is repeatable, predictable performance. With SolidFire, businesses can specify and guarantee minimum, maximum, and burst IOPS (input output per second) for individual storage volumes on the fly, independent of capacity.
  • Automation: SolidFire not only has application programme interfaces (APIs) for automating storage management, but also offers automation of every storage function of the array from the API. Data availability is also highly automated.
  • Easy scalability: The Quality of Service (QoS) performance-virtualisation of resources is SolidFire patented. This technology allows businesses to manage storage performance independently from storage capacity. Because of this, SolidFire can deliver predictable storage performance to thousands of applications within a shared infrastructure. This architecture also allows linear scale-out of capacity and performance, as nodes are added. This gives scaling up to 3.4 petabytes of effective capacity and a potential 7.5 million guaranteed IOPS.
  • Redundancy: SolidFire’s architecture does away with sharing of any hardware component in the system. Connectivity between nodes is redundant, so anything in the cluster can fail, and the system will still run. If one or more nodes fail, SolidFire automatically rebuilds redundant data across the other nodes in minutes, restoring full redundancy while maintaining all guaranteed QoS settings.

Remember, without control and the ability to scale, performance is just a Band-Aid!  See a summary of what SolidFire offers by viewing this infographic.