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					IBM Global
Small and Medium Business




                            Gain Competitive Advantage by
                            Aligning Your IT Infrastructure with
                            Business Objectives
Gain Competitive Advantage by Aligning Your
IT Infrastructure with Business Objectives
May 2007




                                         Executive overview
                    Contents             In today’s highly competitive business environment, CEOs view growth as a
                                         key focus area. Growth is attained with planned strategies and by exploiting
   2   Executive overview                opportunities. It is important that IT infrastructure respond rapidly to
   3   Simplify and automate IT assets   changing business priorities so that it can handle business growth.
   4   Increase operational efficiency
   6   Retain and grow                   By contrast, many IT departments typically make IT purchase decisions based
   7   Summary                           on short-term business requirements and timetables. Although this strategy
                                         meets the needs of the business, over time it results in disparate systems that are
                                         running on many individual servers and that require multiple support teams.
                                         Problem identification is complex, data accessibility across systems is generally
                                         limited and integrating new applications to existing systems seems impossible.
                                         The end result is an IT infrastructure that has met yesterday’s business needs
                                         but today is inflexible with rising operational and maintenance costs.

                                         IT optimization can bridge the differences between the disparate inflexible
                                         infrastructures of the past and the current need for IT to facilitate business
                                         growth. IT optimization is the process of modifying your IT infrastructure to
                                         be more consolidated, flexible and automatic. An optimized IT infrastructure
                                         facilitates the integration of new business applications. It fuels growth by
                                         managing costs through enhanced IT asset utilization, reduces operating
                                         expenses and makes it easier to manage your entire IT infrastructure in line
                                         with the growth objectives of your company.

                                         All businesses, regardless of size, can enjoy the benefits from IT
                                         optimization. An effective approach to IT optimization involves three stages:
                                         1.   Simplify IT infrastructure to reduce cost.
                                         2.   Create operational efficiency to increase flexibility.
                                         3.   Retain and grow IT infrastructure to align with company business goals.

                                         Simplification is the consolidation of servers, storage and network assets
                                         into logical asset pools. This provides a consolidated view of data, which can




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Gain Competitive Advantage by Aligning Your
IT Infrastructure with Business Objectives
May 2007




                                         minimize costs and lead to more efficient utilization of resources. Increasing
     “Virtualization plus                operational efficiency is automating capacity and workload management for
     workload management                 increased flexibility and ultimately achieving policy-based computing, which
     and partitioning                    results in better IT and business alignment. Retain and grow is a strategy of
     will enable platform                realigning the IT budget by using savings in maintenance and operational costs
                                         to invest in growth initiatives. This paper describes these stages in more detail.
     utilization to more than
     double during the next
                                         Simplify and automate IT assets
     five years.”                        Today, you might be facing an IT environment with one workload per server,
     —Dan Vogel, “Key IT Operational
                                         labor-intensive provisioning and disparate management tools that are spread
     Process Trends,” META Group
                                         over multiple sites. IBM and our Business Partners provide a comprehensive
                                         portfolio of services and solutions to help mid-sized companies simplify and
                                         automate their IT assets to:
                                         •    Reduce IT complexity.
                                         •    Use resources (hardware, software, people) more efficiently.
                                         •    Manage costs better.

                                         Simplification of IT assets provides a consolidated view of data, regardless
                                         of where it is housed, freeing up valuable resources so that they can focus
                                         on exploring innovative ways to gain competitive advantage. You can also
                                         reuse your assets more easily, which reduces the cost of change in your IT
                                         environment. Simplification provides a proven architecture and platform that
                                         centrally supports and manages applications that are currently maintained
                                         at different sites. It also uses automated provisioning, which lowers costs by
                                         removing labor-intensive tasks. This can dramatically improve your decision-
                                         making, increase productivity, improve relationships with customers, partners
                                         and suppliers and create more uniform customer service.

                                         Virtualization is a significant component of asset simplification. When you
                                         establish multiple virtual servers per physical server, you can enjoy noticeable
                                         cost savings. When you incorporate an intranet and extranet portal, such as
                                         IBM WebSphere® Portal Express, to share information, it further facilitates




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Gain Competitive Advantage by Aligning Your
IT Infrastructure with Business Objectives
May 2007




                                         productivity improvements and cost savings. When your physical server
                                         utilization rates increase, your virtual servers are provisioned quickly and
                                         automatically. Such automation lowers your provisioning costs while letting
                                         your business respond quickly to changing business needs.

                                         In addition, with automatic workload management, your IT infrastructure
                                         utilization rates can be high without the burden of costly labor-intensive
                                         manual system configurations. Utilizing multiple virtual servers per physical
                                         server will also dramatically reduce licensing costs in many configurations and
                                         facilitate administration.

                                         Some typical cost reductions associated with IT asset simplification include:
                                         •    Server consolidation (4 to 1)
                                         •    Storage consolidation (25%)
                                         •    Network consolidation
                                         •    Support automation (30%)
                                         •    Software licenses

                                         Increase operational efficiency
                                         A National Institute of Standards and Technology study states that 60%
                                         of availability and performance issues are caused by IT changes such as
                                         integrating new applications and upgrading hardware and software. For many
                                         companies today, provisioning a new business solution means provisioning a
                                         new application. In the past, this also required a new server to be provisioned
                                         along with networking and an operating system. These labor-intensive
                                         provisioning tasks are the first areas of possible failure when a performance or
                                         availability problem is found with the new business solution.

                                         When your technical resources, including hardware, software, services
                                         and staff, are consumed with problem determination and resolution, it can
                                         adversely affect efficiency and productivity. This is because identifying the
                                         root cause of problems and rectifying them can be extremely time-consuming




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Gain Competitive Advantage by Aligning Your
IT Infrastructure with Business Objectives
May 2007




                                         and very costly. The same National Institute of Standards and Technology
                                         study showed that 80% of development funds are spent identifying and fixing
                                         problems. Why does problem determination and resolution claim so much
                                         time? Because many companies rely on manual processes to identify and solve
                                         problems—manual processes that can impair a company’s competitiveness.

                                         IBM solutions for operational efficiency automate configuration, maintenance
                                         and problem determination and resolution tasks. They also integrate
                                         with existing IT environments to help mid-sized companies improve the
                                         performance and flexibility of their infrastructures. In turn, your solutions
                                         become more effective and less costly. Automated detection and isolation of
                                         performance bottlenecks identifies and corrects problems quickly without
                                         manual intervention and that means your organization can respond rapidly to
                                         shifting workloads and priorities. Automated provisioning of operating systems
                                         along with the business application onto a newly provisioned virtual server
                                         greatly reduces the mistakes that are possible during manual provisioning, and
                                         it also reduces the planning and procurement costs.

                                         In an IT environment optimized by IBM, a new virtual server is provisioned
                                         automatically and a new operating system is installed by IBM Tivoli®
                                         Provisioning Manager for OS Deployment Express. IBM Tivoli Provisioning
                                         Manager Express then provisions the new business application. The process
                                         is efficient and repeatable and errors are rare. Not only is the new business
                                         solution able to run with an improved operational efficiency, but it was also
                                         created in an efficient operation.

                                         By reducing the time that your staff spends on problem determination and
                                         resolution and by increasing the productivity of all technical resources, your
                                         IT infrastructure and staff can promote rather than inhibit your on demand
                                         business. Solutions such as IBM Tivoli Monitoring Express are powerful,
                                         affordable and easy-to-use availability solutions that help mid-sized companies
                                         manage their IT infrastructures with less system intervention, less disruption
                                         to their business and greater efficiency. You gain better visibility and control




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Gain Competitive Advantage by Aligning Your
IT Infrastructure with Business Objectives
May 2007




                                         of your increasingly complex IT infrastructure and applications—and faster
                                         problem determination and resolution. And, with IBM Enterprise Workload
                                         Manager, you can monitor transaction response time with specified service
                                         levels, system utilization and delay.

                                         The benefits of increased operational efficiency include:
                                         •    Better server and storage use
                                         •    Less server redundancy
                                         •    The cost savings of automated provisioning
                                         •    IT assets that are aligned with business requirements through
                                              orchestration

                                         Retain and grow
                                         As demands on your existing IT infrastructure grow each year, more resources
                                         are required to maintain the existing infrastructure. IT budgets have two
                                         components: spending on new initiatives and spending to operate and
                                         maintain IT organizations, systems and equipment. Companies typically
                                         spend approximately 80% of their budgets on maintenance and operations,
                                         leaving little of the IT budget left for new projects, such as integrating business
                                         processes with key partners, suppliers and clients.

                                         As you reduce the complexity and improve how your IT assets are used, the
                                         maintenance and licensing cost savings can be reallocated from routine
                                         operating expenses to investments that more directly support company
                                         objectives and business growth, such as innovative technologies, services,
                                         techniques and strategic opportunities. By integrating existing systems into a
                                         flexible IT infrastructure, you are giving IT the tools to respond to changing
                                         business priorities rapidly.

                                         The IBM Express Advantage IT Optimization portfolio includes offerings
                                         to help you integrate or migrate existing systems. If you are not sure which
                                         direction is best for your company, the IBM Express IT Strategy Assessment




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Gain Competitive Advantage by Aligning Your
IT Infrastructure with Business Objectives
May 2007




                                         offering will help you determine which strategy is best today and in the future.
     Oxford Instruments cut              These IBM solutions are developed with mid-sized companies in mind, so they
     its total IT operating              are easy to implement, use and manage.
     costs by around 20%
     by consolidating                    If integrating systems is your priority, you will look at many aspects, including
                                         data integration. IBM Balanced Warehouse offers a simple solution for
     onto the IBM System
                                         integrating scattered data resources into a scalable data warehouse that you
     x™ platform through                 can use to create, manage and deliver reports over the Web or embedded
     reduced maintenance,                in applications. By integrating your data, you can send a unified view of
     administration and                  information to the right people at the right time, which helps them make
     floor space while                   informed business decisions.
     providing a unified
     brand image with IBM                Another IT asset that you might want to optimize is your Web site. It is not only
                                         a communication and support tool for customers, but it is also a communication
     WebSphere Portal
                                         tool for investors and suppliers. IBM Express Web Effectiveness Assessment
     Server for both the                 evaluates and provides recommendations to improve the effectiveness of this
     intranet and extranet.              communication channel.

                                         Summary
                                         By building a dynamic infrastructure, IT optimization offers many benefits,
                                         such as:
                                         •    Improved efficiency
                                         •    Managed capacity
                                         •    Shared resources
                                         •    Reduced complexity
                                         •    Lower unit cost
                                         •    Easy administration
                                         •    Fast response rate

                                         Simplification of hardware and software returns a higher ROI than just
                                         the initial budget savings of software licensing and maintenance costs.




                                                          7
Simplification of your access to business data reduces the time and cost of       © 2007 IBM Corporation

making business decisions.                                                          IBM Corporation Software Group
                                                                                    Route 100
                                                                                    Somers, NY 10589
A simplified IT infrastructure can increase operational efficiency by               U.S.A.

reducing the time spent solving problems. This improved operational
efficiency can increase employee productivity because it frees your staff to        Produced in the United States of America
                                                                                    05-07
focus on growth initiatives instead of problems.                                    All Rights Reserved.


When you have access to a greater portion of your IT budget and staff, you          IBM, the IBM logo, System x, Tivoli and WebSphere are
can retain and grow your IT infrastructure, aligning it with the business           trademarks or registered trademarks of International
                                                                                    Business Machines Corporation in the United States,
goals of your company. This increased IT infrastructure flexibility can help        other countries or both.
your company rapidly respond to opportunities.                                      Other company, product and service names may be
                                                                                    trademarks or service marks of others.

The IBM Express Advantage IT Optimization portfolio offers solutions                References in this publication to IBM products or
                                                                                    services do not imply that IBM intends to make them
to help mid-sized companies simplify their IT infrastructures to achieve
                                                                                    available in any other countries.
exceptional performance. As with all Express Advantage solutions, they
are easy to install, use and manage. Further, IBM’s Express Advantage               The IBM home page on the Internet can be found at
                                                                                    ibm.com
program provides superior financing options, including leasing and loans,
as well as a full range of buyback and recycling services, so that you can free
up cash for core investments and lower your total cost of ownership.

Only IBM and its vast network of Business Partners provide a range of
solutions to help mid-sized companies simplify their IT infrastructures,
deep expertise in every industry, extensive local presence and the support
and backing of IBM to deliver simple, affordable, custom solutions. To
help you get started, IBM and our Business Partners offer consulting
in the form of the IBM Express IT Strategy Assessment to help you put
together a strategy that will enable your IT environment to maximize the
performance of current and future assets.

				
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