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Demand for DCIM points to importance of BPM

Ben Farrell
September 17, 2012

Business process management software is capable of integrating diverse data sets across operational departments to streamline operations. In data center environments, this capability can be used to unify information from monitoring devices, control consoles, technicians charting operations using mobile devices and facility systems. In an era when the data center is much more complex and costly than it has been in the past, BPM software can play a vital role in helping IT get the most out of the facilities.

According to a recent Cabling Installation & Maintenance report, the internet has changed the data center industry, especially in the past few years. Web services have created an environment in which companies are supporting large-scale customer-facing systems alongside internal cloud and traditional data center architectures. This has led to a significant expansion in the data center industry.

Furthermore, the rising scale of data centers has been met with increased complexity and new power demands. Citing a Gartner study, the report said an 8,000-square-foot facility costs, on average, $1.6 million to power each year. With energy alone costing so much, many data center operators are striving to find ways to cut costs through efficiency gains.

The news source explained that an increasingly important solution in the area of improving data center efficiency is data center infrastructure management. DCIM offers organizations to manage the entire physical layer of a facility without having to separate the building elements from the infrastructure. As a result, organizations can identify how various systems interact with one another and ensure optimal efficiency. In many ways, a DCIM solution takes the traditional facilities management solutions that have been common in the data center industry and applies them to every aspect of operations.

As DCIM and similar solutions become more prominent in data centers, IT can quickly be faced with an overwhelming amount of data. Monitoring devices can identify hot spots within a data center, if it is raining outside and how hard, wind speeds, any leaks in the plumbing system, the condition of power lines, server utilization rates, network cabling conditions and many other aspects of a facility. Making sense of this data and using it to improve efficiency is key, and BPM can pay dividends by automatically applying repeatable processes based on information and allowing technicians to focus on the most important data.