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DCW 2020 attendees cite reducing data centre energy costs as a ‘top priority’

A new poll from Secure I.T. Environments Ltd, a UK-based design and build company for modular and containerised data centres, has revealed that reducing energy costs (46%) and improving energy efficiency (39%) are key priorities for 2020 amongst IT professionals. 

The poll, which was conducted across the two days of the recent Data Centre World event, found nearly a third (29%) will be focusing on relocating their data centre(s) over the remainder of 2020.

Asked about the top two challenges facing their IT infrastructure over the next two years, half (49%) cited upgrading their existing data centres as the biggest challenge. Second was the continued pressure organisations face around regulatory compliance (37%), either in terms of their specific industry, or areas of general compliance related to the IT department such as GDPR, ISO27001, IASME Governance or NIST.

As we all know, bringing projects to life can be challenging, as revealed when respondents were asked about areas such as budgeting and skills. 34% reported that they see recruiting skilled professionals to work in their IT departments as a key challenge for the coming years. Budgets for projects can also be a problem: 37% reported getting the budget they require, but 27% said they need to fight for every pound, and 20% described themselves as ‘always underfunded’. Only 15% felt they got generous budgets that allowed them to do everything they require.

The pressures facing IT professionals responsible for data centres is also having an impact emotionally. Asked to comment on the emotions conjured up when they think about the current state of their IT infrastructure half (51%) reported negative emotions: Worry (27%), Anxiety (22%) and Despair (2%). The most reported emotion was Pride at 32%.

The poll showed that organisations are not only looking to upgrade their data centres but invest in new technologies to support their businesses across 2020 and 2021. Improving data centre connectivity to benefit cloud services and high performance computing were joint top at 27%, followed by incorporating 5G technology and artificial intelligence at 24%. Edge data centres also featured heavily with a fifth (22%) planning to implement these to improve the performance and flexibility of their infrastructure.

Chris Wellfair, projects director at Secure I.T. Environments, commented, “The data centre is becoming more important to organisations than ever before, as they look at new ways to grow and support staff. However, finding the skilled staff to deliver these transformative projects remains a challenge, even though organisations can secure the budgets needed to upgrade. Having the key personnel and external partners is critical to the long-term success of any data centre project, so the time required to assemble that team needs to be factored into any transformation project. It’s set to be an exciting couple of years as data centres are accommodated across the UK with new technology to serve their businesses.”

The poll was conducted at Data Centre World 2020 on the 11th and 12th March 2020 with 123 respondents.

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