Looking ahead to 2018, what do you believe to be the largest trend within the data center?

One of the largest trends impacting the data center as we know it is the increasing shift to mixed cloud environments. In 2018 many organizations will determine which cloud environment makes the most sense for their applications and will begin to make the move. For IT and data center managers, this means that the need for visibility into their environments — despite location — has never been more critical and the bottom line is the same: IT and data center teams still need visibility into those environments for accurate capacity planning and forecasting to ensure business continuity. To do so, in 2018, IT and data center managers around the globe will become the backbone for advanced cloud infrastructure tools that provide them with a high level of flexibility and visibility into their new mixed cloud environment – adding another layer of complexity to their role.

What do you think is keeping data center managers up at night as they head into 2018?

While each passing year typically brings about new technologies that data center managers must sift through in order to determine if a change is necessary within their own stack of solutions, the one pain point that remains top of mind year-over-year is budget. Despite new technologies or new roles that emerge and transform the IT and data center management team, budget will always be a pain point heading into the New Year. Budget constraints are all too familiar for IT teams, but the pressure to do more with the same — or even less — budget continues to be a challenge.

What will we see less of with regards to the data center in 2018?

As someone who is deep in the trenches of the data center this may be my own hope for the New Year, but in 2018 I believe that we’ll begin to see less of a reactive approach within the data center to one that is more proactive. There are many unforeseen events that occur without proper planning — from natural disasters to full system outages — and it’s become less of a “what if” and more “when.” With the average outage costing even the most advanced enterprises upwards of three-quarters of a million dollars, it’s mission critical that every organization take a proactive stance on ensuring they have the proper systems in place should an unexpected event occur — can you really afford not to?

Each year brings a fresh slate and a new year of opportunity — what are you most excited about?

Personally, I’m most excited to see advanced technologies from cloud tools which access the infrastructure which impact how enterprises are able to manage their business and improve continuity and agility. New technology offerings allow enterprises an entirely new way to orchestrate their infrastructure to fit the exact needs of their business. Legacy systems from several decades ago provided businesses with a highly structured and one size fits all approach to back end systems, and today that couldn’t be more opposite. It’s an exciting time to be in IT, and I look forward to seeing how some of the most brilliant minds and companies across the globe continue to build advanced solutions with the goal of improving business outcomes.