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Where are we now – Ireland’s evolving data strategy

A businesses data strategy ten years ago, normally involved a mix of on location servers, supplemented by a data centre partner for larger organisations. The evolution of the cloud acted as a catalyst for how organisations and individuals store their data. The cloud opened up ways of working together, of sharing information and led to a much bigger conversation on the future of the industry as a whole.

Today most organisations are already employing or considering a hybrid data strategy allowing them to develop a more efficient approach to fit their organisation. Depending on the organisation, this could include a third-party data centre, a public cloud and / or a private cloud. When we look to the immediate future, many organisations are seeking reassurance about cloud storage and a hybrid data strategy. This uncertainty stems from the early days of cloud, for this industry to move forward and bring business with us we need to allay these main concerns:

  • Bandwidth costs – for many organisations there is a significant cost associated with the bandwidth they require when connecting to the cloud via the public internet. Cost is a constant concern when it comes to data storage.
  • Reliability – businesses need to know they have a dependable network that can perform to meet their needs as their organisation and data needs grow.
  • Security – for cloud to pick up where data centres are, businesses need to feel they have a secure and dedicated connection to their cloud.
  • Regulation – presents challenges across the board when it comes to data management, as data experts our clients and partners need the reassurance that we can provide them with the expertise and knowledge they need so that they are not left exposed.
  • Onsight expertise – those looking at moving to hybrid storage will naturally have questions and concerns at different points during the change and as they adjust to it. An in-house resource may have managed these issues in the past, now the data centre needs to provide that support.

Each organisation is different and the above concerns may vary slightly but our research has told us that these issues are what CIOs and data managers across Europe are looking at.

As a data centre provider we understand these concerns. We’re looking at a number of solutions in this area, including AWS Direct Connect solution, which allows for any-to-any dedicated multi-cloud and any of the hyperscale cloud providers. 

What the industry needs to do now, is to look at the changes the sector is facing in the not too distant future, the need for increased data through the network and the arrival of GDPR and PSD2, are all factors which our industry needs to respond to.

In Ireland, in particular we have a significant challenge and opportunity ahead of us. Nine out of the top 10 global technology firms have strategic operations in Ireland, including Microsoft, Google, Apple and Facebook, when we think about this and the role that Ireland wants to play in the technology and data industry in Europe, our data centre providers need to be ahead of the curve on the insight and expertise they provide. The risk if we don’t capture this moment in time is that Ireland could lose some of its recognition as a technology and data leader.

Speaking about the changes that are facing the industry, Tanya Duncan MD of Interxion said: “We are seeing the move to hybrid collocation accelerating in recent times. By 2020 I would be very surprised if any large or medium sized organisations had onsite data storage. There is a fear that doing this will leave businesses open to risk in terms of regulation, connectivity and security”.  
From where we stand at Interxion, we believe these factors will drive the need for greater bandwidth without increasing costs; uncompromising security and the ability to work with organisations as they try to prepare and utilise these regulatory changes to benefit the business.