EMC picks up European Best Workplace Award

EMC has been recognised as one of Europe’s Best Multinational Workplaces in the Best Workplaces 2015 awards announced last week. Every year the Great Place to Work Institute surveys some 6,000 organisations around the world to find companies that encourage workplace cultures of high trust and engagement. Due to the success of EMC’s operations in 12 national Best Workplace rankings across Europe, the company ranked an impressive second out of a field of 25 multinationals.

Ever since EMC came 19th in the 2012 awards, its ranking in these prestigious employer awards has improved year on year. This shows the strength and quality of EMC’s people, from senior leadership setting the strategy and direction to the employees on the front line. EMC’s EMEA President, Adrian McDonald said: ‘A key factor of EMC’s success is our focus on building our strength as an employer and creating the kind of workplace that attracts and retains the best talent, talent which focuses on meeting customers’ needs by helping them optimise their existing infrastructures and build new ones.”

Head to the career page to learn more about the company and what it’s like to work for EMC.

IT as an enabler for business change – EMC Forum Survey

The trends of cloud, mobile, social and big data have fundamentally changed the expectations of consumers and end-users, affecting what is required and expected of IT departments. This much has become clear from our recent survey findings*, questioning IT decision makers in the UK for their perspective on IT’s role as an enabler of business change during the rise of these industry mega trends.

Jeremy Burton, President Products and Marketing, EMC Corporation, explains: “To remain relevant and competitive, businesses across every industry are reinventing their business models to handle unprecedented levels of access, interaction and scale. For this reason, IT finds itself back in the driver’s seat, morphing from cost center to a true catalyst for change through the use of cloud and big data technologies.”

Our survey results reflect this, as although creating efficiencies and reducing cost is still a priority for 60% of businesses, 70% of respondents see IT as a strategic business driver and 78% agree their organisation sees the increasing role of automation as critical to business growth.

Customer experience is a key factor, with 54% of respondents using cloud, mobile, social and big data technologies to improve customer experiences, and 53% seeing it as a top business priority. Organisations are making use of the technologies available to get their IT into shape by building new products and services (43%) and streamlining business functions and improving efficiencies (42%).

However, barriers will need to be overcome to achieve IT’s full potential, as 73% of respondents don’t believe IT has the skills to keep up in the next couple of years.

Take a look at more results from the survey below, and get in touch with any questions or comments on @emcuki.

 

IT is a Business Enabler

  • 70% of respondents in the UK report that their CXOs consider IT as a strategic lever to grow the business, now more than ever before.
  • The top three business priorities when implementing new technologies in organisations from the UK are: delivering savings and finding efficiencies (60%), enhancing the customer experience (53%) and automating processes (49%).
  • 78% of respondents in the UK agree that their organisation sees the increasing role of automation – such as software defined storage – as critical to business growth.

Taking advantage of the Mega Trends

  • 77% of respondents in the UK expect next-generation technologies such as mobile, social, cloud and big data to give their organisation a competitive advantage.
  • UK respondents say these new technologies will impact key aspects of the business, including: improving customer experience (54%), building new products and services (43%) and streamlining business functions and improving efficiencies (42%).
  • As businesses operate increasingly online today, 71% of respondents identified a need for joint public and private cloud services – hybrid cloud – as a means for greater agility and security.

Future of IT

  • 59% of respondents in the UK believe their organisation has the right level of skills and knowledge to complete business priorities successfully.
  • 73% believe it will be a challenge to have these skills keep up with the pace of IT innovation over the next 1-2 years
  • 70% of companies see IT as a business enabler, yet 43% of companies believe that spending for technology was outside IT’s control – indicating there is still work to do in gaining trust from decision makers.
  • 77% believe that the model IT department of the future will act as the in-house provider of on-demand services, including platform-as-a-service and public and private cloud.

*Collected during a non-mandatory questionnaire after completion of registration for the EMC Forum held in London on October 21, 2014. This research polled a total of 664 business and IT management and executives, technical architects, data scientists and storage/infrastructure managers from a range of UK businesses

Restoring confidence in UK data protection technology is vital

Last week, EMC launched its UK findings of their global Data Protection Index study at a media roundtable event on the 38th floor of the Gherkin. It was revealed that in the UK, £10.5 billion was lost per year due to downtime and data loss. In addition, 67% of organisations reported they had suffered disruption, up from 78% since the last study in 2011, while the average disruption causes 700GB of data loss – a significant amount that cannot be ignored.

Whilst up in the clouds, Chris Ratcliffe, SVP EMC Advanced Software Division, EMC and Kelly Brown, Senior Director DPAD Marketing Global, EMC discussed the effect on businesses of not having a secure data protection strategy in place. The study found that although, 25 hours was lost on average in the last year due to unplanned downtime, organisations are still spending less of their budget on recovery and data protection.

Data Protection Index

“If you don’t have a protection strategy in place, you may find that you don’t have the data you want to run things like analytics, business intelligence and Big Data”, says Kelly Brown. “IT can’t always be ‘sexy’; sometimes it has to focus on the slightly more practical side of what technology can do, in order to support the business, protect it from data loss and open up new revenue opportunities.”

The study looked at 24 different countries around the world and ranked them in order of their maturity with regards to data protection capabilities. The UK features very much in the middle of the rank, lagging behind the USA, China and the Netherlands.

John Bland, MD UK Sales at SCC concluded by looking at the emotional effect and executive behavior patterns behind data protection. He focused on the CIO agenda and explained that because data protection has become so integrated with other elements on the board agenda, the question becomes how you roll it into one business conversation.  “The CIO is becoming increasingly marginalized in the organisation as few people want to take the responsibility of ‘owning’ the company’s data” said Bland. “It won’t be long before Chief Digital Officers and the marketing teams are spending more on IT than their own IT department, without understanding the need to protect the data they are trying to work with.”

The rise in popularity of the cloud as a storage device and the use of mobile devices by company employees, mean data protection and back up is as big of an issue today as it ever was. The risk becomes greater as companies generate and store more and more data, and without a backup solution in place, businesses could be in real trouble should problems arise.

The audience heard how UK businesses need to increase their confidence in their own systems, but this can be tricky if there are delays to hardware upgrades, resulting in infrastructure that is more likely to fail. It’s startling that in this era, 78% of UK organisations are not confident that they can fully recover after a disruption. As budgets become tighter and tighter, delays in refreshing technology both at a hardware and software layer, only serves to further expose the risk of data loss.

Barely a day goes by without hacking and cybercrime filling the news agenda, so businesses are starting to invest in strategies and perimeters that can be put in place for protection. The same emphasis needs to be put into backup solutions so that if an attack were to break the perimeter, the company would have the effective data protection technologies in position to avoid too much loose of data or information.

Unfortunately the reality is probably more extreme than the results suggest, and whilst the number of data loss incidents is decreasing overall from 2011, the volume of data loss is growing exponentially and action needs to be taken quickly before the situation gets out of control.

Redefine your business – EMC Forum UK just two months away

Are you ready? EMC Forum UK is back to help redefine your business! In just two months’ time on the 21st of October we will be hitting Westminster Park Plaza Hotel for a day of cloud insights, practical advice, and IT strategy and storage talk. Of course there will be plenty of opportunity to meet and catch up with peers too.

The 2013 event was a great success, so we’re looking forward to seeing many of last year’s attendees again, and to welcoming some new faces. We’ve also pulled out a few of our favourite tweets from last year below.

EMC forum is free to attend, and especially designed for IT professionals looking to get up to speed with everything that is going on in the world of cloud, with plenty of opportunity to engage with technical experts and connect with EMC partners. In other words, it’s a must-attend event for anybody looking to redefine their IT strategy and help transform their business with the latest industry knowledge, best-practices and insights.

vic-bhagat-bwYou can look forward to a keynote from Vic Bhagat, the Executive Vice President of Corporate Services and global CIO EMC – keep your eyes peeled on @EMCUKI for updates on what he will be covering – and dozens of sessions ranging from how to redefine your big data strategy to a look at what’s hot and new in 2014. Explore the agenda here, and register for free!

To get the latest updates on EMC Forums follow @EMCForum on Twitter or take a look at the Facebook page for news and images from the global events. You can also join in the conversation on Twitter using #EMCForum.

 

EMC Mega Launch 2014 – #RedefinePossible

Imagine entering through the TARDIS into a world where rock bands are playing (too) early in the morning to hear all the latest announcements helping to redefine what is possible in the world of big data, cloud and storage. At EMC’s Mega Launch, you didn’t have to imagine.

This year’s version of the annual Mega Launch event couldn’t have been more British if it tried according to EMC CMO Jeremy Burton – except perhaps with the addition of Austin Powers – and the Twittersphere responded with selfies from the TARDIS and many beautiful images of the event.

Oh, and EMC unveiled a whole set of new product releases as well, including updates to XtremIO, VMAX and Isilon.

For an update on the announcements, a recap of the event or just to enjoy some of the great images, take a look at EMC’s Mega Launch on Twitter with the hashtag #RedefinePossible:

Redefine Possible – Mega Launch 2014 – 20 days to go!

It’s just 20 days now until EMC hosts a major launch event that will unveil industry leading innovations that redefine the possible.

Taking place on Tuesday, 8th July 2014 at London’s Old Billingsgate Market, attendees will hear from David Goulden, CEO, EMC Information Infrastructure, Jeremy Burton, President, Products and Marketing, EMC Information Infrastructure, and Jonathan Martin, CMO, EMC Information Infrastructure as they announce breaking news from EMC.

Participants at the event will also receive exclusive access to EMC executives, customers, partners and industry in what promises to be a fantastic spectacle at one of London’s finest venues.

We’ll be sure to bring you more updates as soon as they happen!

The countdown begins – Just six weeks till EMC World 2014!

It is only six weeks to go until EMC World 2014, the annual hotbed for EMC customers, partners and IT professionals to meet. On May 5th EMC World returns to Las Vegas for three days of IT stars, hands on product demonstrations and hundreds of technical sessions on every aspect of IT life.

Keynote speakers at the event include EMC’s top executives; CEO, Joe Tucci, David Goulden (CEO of EMC’s Information Infrastructure division), Jeremy Burton (Executive Vice President) and Amitabh Srivastava (President of EMC Advanced Software Division).

In addition, you’ll be able to hear from VMware’s CEO, Pat Gelsinger and Pivotal’s CEO, Paul Maritz talk about the importance of the EMC Federation in 2014.

There will be a lot of talk around the third platform and how businesses must recognize both the challenge and necessity that they embrace this migration away from the standard second platform of computing. Big data, cloud, mobility and social networking are all going to be key components for businesses to understand and embrace if they are to cope with the complexity of today’s IT environments.

To find out more, the dedicated Facebook page will keep you updated with the latest developments around EMC World 2014.

If you haven’t already, there is still time to register your place here. We anticipate big news this year in Vegas so watch this space for what will hopefully be the most successful EMC World yet.

EMC Business Partner Program Revamped

The EMC Business Partner Program was a great success in 2013, particularly for its UK partners, but where would EMC be if we didn’t strive to keep improving everything that we do? The countdown to the unveiling of the new Business Partner Program has commenced, and we can offer you a sneak preview into some of the changes that have been made to keep offering our partners the very best!

Shaking hands small

The industry spends billions of dollars on marketing, so few questions are as important as the question whether marketing activities are providing real ROI, real value for money. This year will focus on making marketing count, by collating lessons learned, sharing next generation marketing concepts and improving the feedback loop process to track spends against pipeline and bookings.

EMC will also be enhancing the advanced sales training to focus more on solutions; instead of offering the narrow solution of a specific software or hardware product, it is important to identify key issues for the customer and their business needs and to develop inclusive solutions that address those needs. Additionally, it will be easier – not to mention more profitable – for partners to provide cloud services by working with EMC’s existing Cloud Service Provider partners.

Hopefully this has ignited your interest – if you’d like to read more about the upcoming EMC Business Partner Program, why not take a look at this blog post by Fred Kohout, the Vice President WW Channel Marketing at EMC, on the EMC Community Network.

EMC Wins Two V3 2013 Technology Awards

v3 technology awards 2013The fourth annual V3 Technology awards took place on Friday 29th November. These awards are based on submissions and V3 reader votes, with the process having been kicked-off in June. There are seven key categories including ‘Office Equipment’ and ‘Movers and Shakers’, with each category having several sub-categories.

EMC secured a total of five nominations in the shortlist stage, a significant achievement given how fierce the competition is within each category. Alas, a clean sweep was not achieved on this occasion but we were delighted to take home the awards for ‘Best Business Storage’ and ‘Customer Project of the Year’. EMC Isilon is our scale-out NAS storage offering which provides a powerful, simple and efficient way to consolidate and manage enterprise data and applications.  To receive this V3 award is a huge celebration for the efforts of all those involved in making this award winning product.
Cancer Research UK announced it was able to improve its storage utilisation by 30 per cent as a result of using EMC’s VNX unified storage product, winning the Customer Project of the Year award in the process. Cancer Research UK is the world’s leading charity dedicated to beating cancer through research and it’s fantastic to see the team’s efforts recognised with this award.

We’d like to thank everyone who took the time to vote for EMC in the awards and congratulate all those who also won a 2013 V3 Technology Award – you can find a full list of the winners here.

How mature is the UK? Results of the Global IT Trust Curve Survey

“The four big megatrends in information technology today are cloud computing, Big Data, social networking and mobile devices. Adoption and maturity of these trends must float upon a sea of trust” says David Goulden, EMC President and Chief Operating Officer. Goulden refers to the trust that information is secure in the cloud, trust that data won’t be lost or stolen and trust that IT will be operational at all times. The impact of the four megatrends can be boosted or limited by the trust in IT, meaning that the IT maturity of each country will have an effect on their overall ability to compete.

Yesterday morning EMC hosted a UK media roundtable in central London where Rashmi Knowles, RSA chief security architect, and Mark Galpin, Senior Manager EMEA Product Marketing at EMC discussed the results of an independent, global survey spanning 3,200 influential decision makers across 16 countries and 10 industry sectors. Dave Cripps, CISO at banking and asset management group Investec also attended, providing insights into what IT strategies and infrastructures are being deployed within companies and governments throughout the world, as well as discussing how the UK ranked against each of the countries according to their IT maturity that took part in the study. One key point of discussion highlighted the alarming finding that a seeming lack of confidence exists amongst senior executives with regards to the ability of their IT infrastructure to provide continuous availability, advanced security and integrated backup and recovery. Cripps added to this that the security industry was failing businesses by selling fear, uncertainty and doubt.IT Trust Infographic

This lack of trust and confidence is problematic as it may lead to reduced investment, which is crucial to achieving a mature IT infrastructure. Mature IT allows organisations to better withstand and recover quickly from disruptive incidents, such as unplanned downtime, security breaches and data loss. The occasional setback may still occur, however more can be avoided and recovery is quicker and with fewer consequences. Therefore it is important for organisations to adopt progressive strategies in order to achieve Trusted IT infrastructures. A key factor is to not only invest in technology however, but to also invest in training staff. Rashmi Knowles pointed out that the biggest security threat these days is people themselves, whereby education plays a crucial role: “Security is about people, process and technology. It’s all of those things, not just technology.”

So, how well are we faring in the UK? The UK ranked eighth – out of 16 – in maturity on the IT Trust Curve, with China clinching the #1 spot for having the highest concentration of sophisticated continuous availability, advanced security and integrated backup and recovery technologies. According to Knowles, this is partly due to their belief that they have all the right systems in place, as well as the fact that many of the obstacles that exist for other countries, such as a lack of resources, skilled workforce and budget, are currently not an issue for China.

You can view the complete details of the survey here, and below we’ve listed a number of the key findings from the survey.

  • More than half of the respondents fall into the lower maturity categories, whereby the higher the level of maturity, the more likely organizations are to have already implemented strategic and leading-edge technology projects such as Big Data Analytics.
  • There is a drastic lack of confidence in technology infrastructure, with almost half of all respondents – 45% overall, 46% in the UK – responding that their senior executives aren’t confident that their organizations have an adequate IT infrastructure in place. Further, just under one in five respondents – 19% globally, 18% in the UK – state an overall lack of trust in their technology infrastructure.
  • There is a divide within organisations as to how a future resilient and secure IT infrastructure can be achieved, with many more IT decision makers than business decision makers considering the IT department to be the motivation and drive for this.
  • Budget constraints remain a problem, being highlighted by 52% of respondents globally as the #1 obstacle to implementing improved IT infrastructures. In the UK this figure even rises to 57%, with other constraints including resources and/or workload constraints (48%), culture (flexibility, acceptance) (35%), and knowledge & skills (30%).

The global research and spokespeople form EMC and Investec all agreed on one thing. A lack of trust in IT is likely to prevent necessary investments in IT to ensure the IT infrastructure is able to withstand disruptions and threats, which can only lead to a continued, vicious circle of lack of Trust in IT and low IT maturity, severely impeding progress. This survey has demonstrated that many countries are lacking, both in IT maturity and trust in IT, so although there are also other obstacles too, Trust in IT is a crucial issue when it comes to secure and resilient IT infrastructures in the future.