Credit: Pawel Kryj@FreeImages.com; License
Because the data are the most important value you have.
You know these familiar situations.
You are responsible for important data. If you will lose them, the company will lose millions of income, credibility or (possibly even) break the law.
You backup all data but you feel that it's not enough. The recovery process takes an extremely long time. Procedures are complicated and include forwarding of service ticket from one team to another.
The most important data are in a huge database whose backup takes several hours. But your SLA allows losing just last hour of data in case of disaster. And you have 4 hours to recover it to the state before the crash.
The vendors are covering you with new technology offers to improve your SLA, but with decreasing RTO and RPO the cost of solution grows exponentially.
But you don't have an inflatable budget. Nobody has it! There are even pressures to save costs.
Save money! Save money! Save money!
You hear it from all sides every day, but on the other side, there are still newer and newer business requirements for new services with continuously growing quality.
The remote offices fight with limited WAN bandwidth.
The backup system is not able to complete all jobs within defined nightly time window and the backups are still running at morning when users start applications already. Such strain of disk arrays increases I/O latency above the acceptable level and your ticketing system is filling by requests demanding resolution.
The managers of important business systems are escalating the situation through your manager.
And the most horrible situation? You need to prepare a report explaining to stakeholders why your company lost the biggest customer.
Do you feel such frustrations?
Do you see yourself in such situations?
Credit: Ryan Hyde@flickr.com; CC BY-SA 2.0
Credit: Rolf van de Wal@pixabay.com; CC0
Imagine the world where your nightly backup finishes before your user's alarm clock will ring.
Imagine the world where you can offer 15-minute RPO for your business critical data with the recovery time below 1 hour.
Even better: Imagine the world where business critical data (with 15-minute RPO and 1h RTO) are backed up and restored when necessary by database admins themselves. No ping-pong of recovery request between the database and the backup team.
The monitoring status of your disk arrays and backup system is completely green.
Waiting for audit and you are relaxed instead of stressed. Your regular SAP test restore finished successfully within the defined RTO.
Can you see it? Nirvana. Or never-ending coffee break (aka nirvana for managers).
Believe me; it is not sci-fi.
Such a world can exist in your company too. Even without NSA-sized budget.
If your storage and backup system fulfills all required SLAs, fulfills even future SLAs for data availability (coming with new business applications), allows easy scalability,...
Then this offer is not for you.
You don't need my service. Give a bonus to your architects and admins because they are really good.
If you have trouble to improve data availability (or even to keep the current SLA), you don't have an inflatable budget, or you hesitate about possible technology changes, then it is very dangerous to simply maintain the status quo.
Also to use the same complicated procedures, to try to extend capacity and performance with obsolete technology and to keep the current status, in this case, can have direct financial impacts:
Credit: Christian Ferrari@FreeImages.com; License
You need backup/recovery procedures to be revised; removal of unnecessary parts and inclusion of steps assuring data integrity.
I will do the revision for you.
You need to buy an additional license for the existing system to unlock a "life-saving" feature.
I will review capabilities of your current storage and backup infrastructure.
You don't need to buy a brand new system if the old one can be optimized or simply upgraded.
I will analyze tuning and/or upgrade possibility.
You might not need to increase the capacity of your network, disk arrays or backup system; You might simply need to optimize data flow.
I will analyze your main data flows and show possible points of troubles.
You don't need to replace your servers or storage arrays with more powerful ones if bottlenecks can be identified and removed.
I will analyze your log files and try to expose hidden points of troubles.
You don't know how to prevent known bottlenecks in the future.
I will suggest the metrics your monitoring system should watch.
(Many times vendor monitoring ignores such metrics.)
You don't need to expand existing technology if there is alternative technology offering better functionality and performance and better scalable for less money.
I will suggest what possibilities today's technologies of various vendors offer you.
You regularly order systems including HW modules and/or licenses you are not using. (Vendor's favorite: quote FC HBAs - each $1000+ - for pure LAN connected NAS array.) You may have thrown away thousands of dollars this way in past years.
I will compare your "shopping list" with your real needs.
You plan a big investment in the technology lifecycle, and you have several vendors' proposals, but you are not able to decide.
I will design evaluation criteria for your RFP. The weighted coefficients will be based on your real
priorities of particular features.
(Paired Comparison Analysis)
You know that any IT investment today is in the range from tens of thousands to millions of dollars.
Every point from my service offer can save you up to tens of percent of your planned investment for this year:
Every possibility listed above will save you thousands if not even tens of thousands of dollars.
You will get the exact KPI (or list of KPIs) to measure as a proof of optimization after the proposed changes.
I believe you are getting a lot of optimization offers from your current vendors and from companies they would like to be your vendor as well.
Most of IT consultants are working for some big IT company. Either IT vendor or solution integrator preffering some venor (based on particular contracts and margins). They will claim you them preffered product is the best for your trouble.
My offer is unique because I will not recommend you any particular vendor.
I will recommend to you what to demand, and you will decide what vendor to use.
I will give you table of mandatory and optional features you should have and it is up to your vendor, what technology will offer you to fullfil your requirements.
I'm selling you my knowledge and experiences, not HW/SW.
Still in doubt?
Imagine your storage and backup infrastructure in the current state:
And now imagine your team in 6-9 months when your infrastructure will be tuned and processes will be without any obstacles or unclear points. Imagine your manager when you show him the improved quality of services and savings in your budget.
You know that such a situation in IT is priceless.
Take the best from A-class players, modify, combine and use for your own advantage.