According to IDC, the managed and data centre service markets in the UAE will grow at a compound annual growth rate of 19.8 per cent between 2013 and 2018 to reach a total of $971.8 million (Dh3.6 billion) by 2018. This acceleration is due to the increasing demand from core growth industries such as retail, health care and manufacturing.
Data centre hosting makes up approximately 18 per cent of the managed services market revenue in the UAE. Industry sectors such as banking and finance, aviation, media, government, IT and telecoms in particular have taken to managed services as ensuring a secure and reliable system is critical.
Why managed IT services?
In today’s business environment, organisations need to adopt new technologies in order to expand their operations and improve productivity and customer experience. Many companies do not have the required resources to support a dedicated in-house IT team. Faced with mounting costs and an increasingly complex IT environment to manage, organisations are now more than ever looking at managed IT services as an alternative to in-house IT infrastructure management.
Managed IT services offer companies multiple benefits. At the strategic level, they allow companies to focus and leverage their resources towards their core business activities, rather than spending too much time on operational activities. At the level of operations, it offers the skills and expertise of a service provider to competently manage complex data centre requirements. Finally, at the financial level, managed IT services reduce total cost of ownership and provide the benefit of a subscription-based opex model.
This means that companies can continue to focus on their strategic business objectives; relocate funds on developing new applications and innovation; and indirectly win access to skilled resources, latest technology and best-in-class IT infrastructure. Companies can opt for various IT infrastructure outsourcing options, which range from fully managed hosting to cloud hosting and collocation, as well as remote monitoring and management of their IT. To meet the increasing on-demand requirement for data centre space, power, cooling, network bandwidth, hardware, software, managed services and 24/7 service desk, etc., organisations prefer using third-party data centres rather than hosting that infrastructure internally, as their in- house server rooms don’t offer redundancy in terms of power, cooling, connectivity, services, etc.
Managed IT services can help organisations cut costs significantly and improve operational efficiencies tremendously. But where do they start? Companies need to put together a comprehensive plan for assessing their business objectives and goals so that they can be confident that they are making the right decision for their business. In the end, it is all about striking the right balance.