The number one concern for customers buying storage is total cost of ownership, as businesses look to cope with the amount of data they generate.
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In a survey of storage users by the Storage Networking Industry Association Europe (Snia-E), more than one in three IT directors stressed the need for low TCO above ease of management and systems integration.
The findings come as a warning to dealers to evaluate their storage sales models and respond to customer demands.
Charles Inches, chairman of the Snia-E user advisory board, warned customers of the “importance of calculating TCO before investing in new storage”.
But Rupert Beeby, director of operations at storage services specialist Sagitta, believed that customers had traditionally looked at storage as a “fit and forget” purchase, and vendors had made them aware of the costs involved in management of storage.
“Customers that buy from the channel either do not look for [TCO] or channel partners do not provide [TCO] for them,” he contended.
One storage reseller told MicroScope: “Most customers focus on the cost of purchase and endeavour to get one or more years of support cost bundled in, believing they [will then] have total cost of ownership.
“This is incomplete by some measure. Additional storage has an impact on the IT infrastructure, back-up and recovery, disaster recovery strategy and storage management.
“Disks might be cheap, but this is a subset of the total cost of storage.”