Editor’s note: In this blog’s focus on building a smarter planet, we put a lot of “ink” about macro industry issues. We also want to help readers understand that beneath all of this is a critical technology infrastructure. To that end, we asked IBM’s Bernie Spang to contribute his perspective on the topic while he is attending the “Smarter Systems for a Smarter Planet” event in IBM’s Almaden Research Labs. Following is his blog post:
There is an increasing sense of urgency we hear from clients who want to get more value from their IT systems. More value in two dimensions – greater value from the information they manage and greater efficiency of the systems themselves.
They have surely obtained value from the investments they’ve made in managing information to execute business processes. But they don’t feel as if they have a consistent view of all their information and enough visibility into the current state and changing conditions of their organization and the markets they serve. They believe that they can better use computing systems to analyze their information to discover hidden insights. Insights that can help them optimize the way their business operates, to optimize the way they interact with their customers and to find new opportunities that they couldn’t see before.
With greater analysis of existing information, they could better serve their citizens or patients, or gain competitive advantage and sell more products and services. This is propelling businesses around the world to not just continue to invest in analytic-based solutions but to increase their investment.
But how does an organization increase such investment at a time when most budgets are at best flat? And when the majority of those budgets go to maintaining existing systems with the capacity needed to support business as usual growth?
That is where the value of greater efficiency comes in. And why IBM is accelerating delivery of systems that are optimized for specific application workloads. Systems that are the right size and balance of finely tuned resources and easily expanded as needs of the business dictate. A new generation of software, servers and storage technology has opened the way for much greater efficiency. Freeing clients to shift investment from maintaining to excelling.
IBM Systems z clients have known for years that running multiple workloads on a single system, each running in its own virtual image, maximizes system utilization and delivers the lowest cost of computing per application user. Innovations such as POWER7 processors, eX5 systems and DB2 pureScale have opened the door to using this “virtual scale-out” approach to dramatically increase the efficiency of Unix and x86-Linux computing environments.
At today’s Smarter Systems for a Smarter Planet event at the Almaden Research Center, IBM client AfriSam and business partner Synopsis shared how they are optimizing IT to improve business results.
AfriSam is the #1 building supply business in South Africa. They play an active role in building the core infrastructure such as airports, roads and harbors. AfriSam’s CIO shared how they recently moved their SAP environment from an Oracle Database running on HP Servers to an optimized IBM Power and DB2 system in one weekend, and have been able to reduce storage space by approximately 35 percent. This has translated into significant cost savings.
Latin American-based business partner Synopsis recently worked with Banco de Credito del Peru to move its banking application, Credipago over to an IBM optimized system in just a matter of days. The banking system is now running IBM DB2 software on Power System that is performing transactions 30 percent more efficiently and had reduced ongoing software costs. The bank is able to shift investment to analyzing information to gain new insights regarding trends in customer services to better serve their clients.
These are just two of the many stories I have heard recently from clients and partners that all echo the same theme. Around the world and in all industries the top priorities are driving down cost though more efficient systems, and accelerating growth by investing in analytic systems to uncover new insights. And that in a nutshell is what we mean by Smarter Systems for a Smarter Planet.
Bernie Spang is the director of product strategy in IBM’s Software Group.