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Uptime Institute Market Intel: DCIM Has Big Potential But It’s Not a Magic Box

Jun 1, 2018
by Josh Anderson

NORTH CHARLESTON, SC — The data center industry faces a lot of challenges, and one that is particularly interspersed among them is how to take advantage of all of the disruptive technology out there. So when CapRE invited the Uptime Institute’s Scott Macintire to provide findings from a Market Intel Report to CapRE’s Southeast Data Center Summit Spring 2018 Update, it was no surprise that he devoted a bit chunk of time to the potential that such tools hold for our industry. Below, we highlight one major topic that Macintire covered during his address – DCIM.

Macintire began his remarks by pointing out that 55% of enterprise respondents have purchased DCIM. “That’s shocking, since 75% of enterprise folks do not consider themselves to be early adopters,” he mused. “55% have purchased DCIM. Usually when you buy it and implement it, I expect a higher number than 70% to consider it a successful deployment. A lot of it comes down to integration and planning. Where were your requirements? Why did you need DCIM? What did you want to track? How much is it going to cost? What other systems does it have to implement with?”

According to Macintire, those respondents that do use DCIM usually want to start to add on to it and use even more tools, once they get used to it and they understand how it works. “One of the exciting things in DCIM that I’m sure we’re going to see more of in the next few years is how it ties into AI,” he offered. “And how you can have a lights-out data center. That’s kind of the holy grail.”

data center summitMacintire then shared that he knows of two AI companies that are coming to data centers with a proposal. “They’re saying hey, we’ll provide you free access to this artificial intelligence if you provide us with the data from your data center,” he recalled. “There is a lot of security issues there, opening up another pipe to the data center. But a lot of companies are doing it. and in the end what these companies are trying to do is get enough data so that that AI will be able to make decisions for that enterprise.”

What comes next, then according to Macintire, platforms called Data Center as a Service and Data Center Management as a Service. “There are people out there working on this,” he shared. “I think that will be interesting to watch in the next few years. It will add another layer of complexity, and I’m sure that that some things will stay the same but it’s going to be really cool.”

So why hasn’t DCIM been amazingly successful across the board? Why are only 70% happy with their deployment? “It’s what I like to call a magic box,” he replied. “Everyone thinks, I’m going to buy this thig, I’m going to plug it in, and it’s going to do all of this great stuff. Nope. It’s going to take lots of integration and a clear understanding of the end-state that you have for your DCIM. Those numbers that we have are better than Congress’ approval ratings, but there are some challenges there.”

Scott Macintire, Director – Client Engagement, Uptime Institute

Be sure to check out previous CapRE Insider Reports covering Macintire’s remarks:

Scott Macintire is the Director for Client Engagement at the Uptime Institute, which is focused on improving the performance, efficiency, and reliability of business critical infrastructure through innovation, collaboration, and independent certifications. It is best known for its widely adopted “Tier Standard” and the associated certification of data center compliance.  Scott’s career in information technology and Infrastructure spans 10 years and includes time building solutions for infrastructure providers and providing consulting support for IT transformation initiatives. Currently at the Uptime Institute, Scott is focused on deepening existing relationships and building new partnerships in the US as the Director of Customer Success. He is a graduate of Tulane University and spent his early career as an Infantry Officer in the Marine Corps.

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