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Half of all data centers understaffed, Symantec survey finds

Jon Brodkin | Jan. 12, 2010
Fifty per cent of IT executives say their data centers are understaffed, and companies are still looking for more ways to cut costs, according to Symantec's latest "State of the Data Center" report.

The top three data center initiatives cited by survey respondents were security, backup and recovery and continuous data protection. Those technologies were rated as more important than server virtualization, data archiving, green technology and the cloud, among others.

Given that the survey was commissioned by Symantec -- a specialist in antivirus, backup and storage -- those results don't seem surprising. However, Derrington said the survey did not exclude non-Symantec customers and Applied Research does not reveal to Symantec how many enterprises in the survey sample are customers of Symantec.

Symantec also examined disaster-recovery plans, and found a mix of good and bad news. On average, respondents reported an 80 per cent confidence level in their DR plans. However, one-third of enterprises said their DR plans are undocumented or need work. One-third of enterprises also haven't re-evaluated their DR plans in the last 12 months, and numerous respondents haven't yet written virtual servers, remote offices and cloud initiatives into their formal plans.

These findings clearly indicate that there is room for improvement in DR planning, Derrington says. A typical enterprise in the survey suffered two downtime events in the past 12 months, with the main causes being system and application failures, natural disasters, and human error.


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