“I don’t think they’re unconvinced of the need,” says Jennifer Ewen, senior market analyst with the research firm. “I think they’re unconvinced of the benefits or they may feel the cost outweighs the benefits.”James Franklin, manager of product marketing with EMC Corp., agrees companies aren’t adopting it as quickly as they perhaps should be.
“SRM (storage resource management) has been a slow market to materialize because we’re asking our customers to change institutionalized processes that are tried and true,” he says.
It’s also hard to pinpoint return on investment because cost savings are operational — in other words, they’re soft cost savings that take time to recoup. Customers should start by measuring productivity, says Franklin, and pick a project where they’ll be able to reclaim storage capacity, such as e-mail or Microsoft temp files. “If you have a lot of duplicate data, reclaim those assets,” he says. “You’ll be able to justify the purchase of your software and your centralized approach.”
Start small, figure out which applications are over-allocated, show how you can reclaim storage capacity and use that to come up with cost savings, he says. This applies to any organization, says Franklin.
“(Even some of) our enterprise shops deploy huge amounts of SRM and then never use it and they go nowhere with it.”
SRM tools can help organizations get started with an information life cycle management strategy. But things will start to get really interesting when they’re able to recall data across applications and across physical media — when information is ultimately transformed into knowledge, he says.

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