HyperScale Data Centers Featured Article

In the World of Digitized Business, the Data Center Reigns Supreme

August 03, 2017
By Special Guest
Antonella Corno, Senior Manager, Product Strategy, Learning@Cisco -

Today’s data centers bear little resemblance to those of the past in terms of the responsibility they carry. For digitized businesses, the data center is the hub of a whole new realm of possibilities. It serves as a versatile reservoir of data and software and must remain up and running to serve the organization and its customers.

Enterprises need access to data from anywhere. They must analyze it instantly and then use it to make rapid decisions closer to where the data came from in order to fuel innovation and reach their desired business outcomes. As a result, the business need has changed from simply connecting devices. It is now about securing, aggregating, automating and drawing insights from the data these devices generate - all done in a way that opens up new markets and new business models.

Spending on data centers will rise to $16 billion by 2019, according to IDC. The research firm also forecasts that by 2018, 60 percent of companies will rely on highly instrumented data centers that use automation to boost efficiency and demonstrate the return on investment for IT expenditures.

In such an environment, the skills that you must have are changing rapidly. Expanding your skill sets in order to keep pace with the evolution of technology is key.

Skills needed in modern data center infrastructure

To upgrade data center architecture for today’s digitized world, you need advanced skills. Deep product and technical knowledge is still necessary. However, to enable “IT-as-a-service” agile infrastructure, you are now expected to have not only a depth but also a breadth of knowledge across technologies.

A few specialists will remain, but more often than not you’ll need a wide range of skills to take advantage of new developments in data center infrastructure. These infrastructure-oriented skills span servers, storage, networking and hardware. Other skills cover software, the cloud, virtualization and security.

Shouldering these new skills enables you to turbo-charge your value to organizations. Automating IT tasks shortens the time needed to get applications running and to accomplish business goals. Learning to use SDN policies that take into account business needs across physical and virtual networks, servers, storage, security and services advances your organization. Additionally, it’s important to integrate all physical and virtual environments under one policy model. All of this enables businesses to derive greater value from growing volumes of data in a faster timeframe. It also significantly boosts IT responsiveness without additional resources.

To validate your skills, there are certifications you can obtain. Certifications set you apart and show that you can orchestrate intricate solutions in today’s complex data centers.

New skills for the data center

Skill-based certification and training enables you to optimally plan, implement, and run IT data center network infrastructure supporting agile and innovative business initiatives.

Training should serve you at each level of your career, from beginner to advanced, on topics such as:

  • Basic skills for installing, configuring and maintaining data centers
  • The basics of cloud computing, automation and orchestration of data center infrastructure
  • Unified computing
  • Virtualization
  • Data center virtualization
  • SDN management and monitoring
  • Data center security
  • Policy-driven infrastructure
  • Storage networking
  • Evolving technologies like IoT and cloud

Looking Ahead

The data center has become the foundation of the digitized business, and investing in the learning and development of data center employees has become essential. To get ahead, you need to understand how to harness new data center technologies to deliver business agility. By equipping you to manage the modern data center, businesses proactively prepare for your success.

About the Author

Antonella Corno is the senior manager of product strategy at Learning@Cisco. She actively manages the development of the learning portfolio, overseeing a team that translates information from hardware and software developers to architects of technology training and certification. After spending more than two decades across two continents working in technology research and development for leading Information Technology (IT) firms, Antonella understands the challenges that individuals face when entering, training and updating skills in the IT industry. Antonella works tirelessly to build frameworks for these individuals to enable the learning process. Antonella is a CCIE Emeritus, has spoken at several international conferences, and holds multiple international patents.


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