“Spring Clean” Your IT

Spring Clean Your IT_TierPoint By Kip Thurston, General Manager and Vice President

Spring is coming. For many organizations, it’s a hopeful time of year. January and most of February are filled with budget discussions, but by March and April, those negotiations are (mostly) behind us. Best of all, there’s still plenty of time left in the year to make things happen.

To get the rest of the year started off on the right foot, we suggest a little in-house spring cleaning. Below are three ideas, any of which could be blown up into a major project. However, even minor efforts in each of these areas can help you realize some quick wins.

#1 Out with the Old

Almost every organization has some part of their IT infrastructure that’s getting a little long in the tooth. Now may be a good time to consider which of your applications and data sets can be moved from aging on-premises hardware and into the cloud. You can get immediate performance (and security) improvements and make hardware upgrades and maintenance a thing of the past.

Tip: Clouds are not an all or nothing strategy. Most organizations we work with use some form of hybrid IT, with their applications and data spread across public and private clouds as well as on-premises data centers. Taking this approach can help you manage your budgets wisely, ensure data security, and get the performance you need. Continue reading

Designing an HA/DR Strategy for SQL Server 2016

By Mike Donaghey, DBA Services Manager

To ensure business continuity in the face of a power outage, natural disaster, or equipment
failure, it’s important to consider your high availability (HA) and disaster recovery (DR) strategy. HA minimizes the odds of a disruption from malfunctioning equipment or service failure, while DR is your plan for getting up and running after a disaster.

Developing an HA and DR strategy can be challenging.  Microsoft’s SQL Server 2016, like most other major databases, offers several possible HA/DR options, but which you choose will depend on your company’s requirements for recovery and the details of your IT infrastructure, as well as which edition of SQL Server you have. Microsoft provides a comprehensive comparison chart of the High Availability features of SQL Server 2016 editions here.

To help you understand your options, Matt Aslett, Research Director for Data Platforms and Analytics at 451 Research, and I reviewed many of the key considerations and capabilities around HA/DR plan and SQL Server 2016’s HA/DR capabilities in this recent webinar:

Register now: On-demand webinar_SQL Server: Understanding Your Options for Disaster Recovery & High Availability Continue reading

Are You a 21st Century CIO?

By Lucie Poulicakos, General Manager & Vice President, TierPoint

The role of the CIO or CTO—or even IT manager—hasn’t been around that long. According to CIO.com, the title of CIO didn’t come into existence until sometime in the late ’80s or early ’90s. Even then, it was seen as a “trendy title,” but “often at the same level as the IT manager or MIS manager.” Not the role most CIOs probably envisioned when they finally earned their promotion!

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As technology advanced, so too did the role of the CIO and CTO. It’s been said that every organization is a technology organization these days. There’s certainly some truth to that. Everyone from C-level executive, to salesperson, to receptionist relies on technology to get the job done. Managing this level of complexity requires someone with the capacity to look at the big picture and to understand how all the pieces fit together. Somewhere in the 15 years, the role of CIO transitioned from a “trendy title” to a “must have” for every organization. And the role isn’t done changing yet. Continue reading

Creating Alignment Between IT and the Business

Creating_Alignment_TierPoint Blog

By Todd Currie, General Manager & Vice President, TierPoint

In the Society for Information Management’s latest survey of Chief Information Officers, alignment to IT was the number one issue for CIOs in 2016. It’s a perennial favorite in just about every IT study and has been for years. Perhaps that should come as no surprise. When IT isn’t aligned to the needs of the business, negative things can happen:

— Business opportunities are missed
— IT can lose funding mid-project
— Millions are spent on projects that are never rolled out
— Successful projects are deemed failures by the business
— IT is not seen as a strategic contributor to the organization Continue reading