7 steps to a storage assessment

Find a sponsor. Industry executives say an assessment project needs a champion from fairly high up in an organization. In addition to underscoring commitment to the project, a senior manager provides a view-from-the-top perspective. An assessment that fails to take into account an organization's goals runs the risk of irrelevancy.

Get support. Having friends in high places is a good start, but an assessment also needs to achieve support from different levels in an organization. EMC Corp. officials use a kickoff meeting to involve a variety of employees, said Jon Wehse, business continuity practice manager for EMC's federal division. Such a meeting may include systems, network and storage administrators and business unit executives.

Scope out high-level needs. At this stage, senior managers can help define basic storage needs, based on an organization's evolving mission and growth prospects. Dan Smith, enterprise technology consultant for GTSI Corp.'s storage technology team, refers to this step as executive-level requirements.

Assess the as-is state. This discovery phase takes an inventory of data and the devices on which it is stored. At this point, an organization can gain insight into storage utilization, backup and recovery capabilities, and storage management policies, or the lack thereof.

Envision the to-be environment. Here, officials determine the idealized future state of storage. This step will likely involve a compilation of detailed storage requirements, taking into account the performance and protection requirements of various data types and applications.

Analyze the gap. To avoid shelfware status, an assessment must provide a clear path to implementation. Analyzing the difference between the current and future states is a good place to start.

Generate recommendations. Specific recommendations are the ultimate product of a storage assessment. Here, executives advise against a one-fell-swoop approach. A phased implementation is the preferred approach in most cases.

The Fed 100

Read the profiles of all this year's winners.

Featured

  • Then-presidential candidate Donald Trump at a 2016 campaign event. Image: Shutterstock

    'Buy American' order puts procurement in the spotlight

    Some IT contractors are worried that the "buy American" executive order from President Trump could squeeze key innovators out of the market.

  • OMB chief Mick Mulvaney, shown here in as a member of Congress in 2013. (Photo credit Gage Skidmore/Flickr)

    White House taps old policies for new government makeover

    New guidance from OMB advises agencies to use shared services, GWACs and federal schedules for acquisition, and to leverage IT wherever possible in restructuring plans.

  • Shutterstock image (by Everett Historical): aerial of the Pentagon.

    What DOD's next CIO will have to deal with

    It could be months before the Defense Department has a new CIO, and he or she will face a host of organizational and operational challenges from Day One

  • USAF Gen. John Hyten

    General: Cyber Command needs new platform before NSA split

    U.S. Cyber Command should be elevated to a full combatant command as soon as possible, the head of Strategic Command told Congress, but it cannot be separated from the NSA until it has its own cyber platform.

  • Image from Shutterstock.

    DLA goes virtual

    The Defense Logistics Agency is in the midst of an ambitious campaign to eliminate its IT infrastructure and transition to using exclusively shared, hosted and virtual services.

  • Fed 100 logo

    The 2017 Federal 100

    The women and men who make up this year's Fed 100 are proof positive of what one person can make possibile in federal IT. Read on to learn more about each and every winner's accomplishments.

Reader comments

Please post your comments here. Comments are moderated, so they may not appear immediately after submitting. We will not post comments that we consider abusive or off-topic.

Please type the letters/numbers you see above

More from 1105 Public Sector Media Group