On-demand is in demand with European IT directors looking to keep a lid on spiraling costs and operational complexities.
Cost reduction, particularly in power requirements, was the key reason why 94% of European businesses wanted to invest in virtualization and 88% in hosted software, according to an independent research sponsored by Colt. Better use of systems capacity and the ability to roll out new technologies faster were also key incentives to invest, cited by respondents.
These benefits were seen to outweigh the risks, which for virtualization focused on the impact on system performance, an increase in system complexity and a dearth of skills.
Most companies have already started their virtualization journey, beginning with servers (68%), moving on to storage (56%), and more recently application virtualization, adopted by 40% of respondents.
We expect there to be a major increase in application virtualization over the next two years, as it enables businesses to align technology investments directly with business needs. It sets SLAs around the delivery of specific applications, such as email accounts and access to ERP and CRM systems, said Geoff Gilton, head of managed services products at Colt.
Security was unsurprisingly the main worry for those adopting software as a service, followed by fears of loss of control and reliability.
But the drive toward cutting costs, and the easier management and improved service meant that two thirds of businesses saw it as a relevant way of delivering the full range of business applications from CRM to ERP and HR.
The results are based on interviews with 410 IT directors and managers across 13 European countries at companies with 500 to 5,000 employees.