New research suggests that IT managers aren't spending a lot of time stressing over their storage systems, but a little reflection suggests that they probably should be.
Research firm Gartner recently gathered a bunch of journalists (myself included) in Sydney to discuss what's keeping IT managers awake at nights, apart from the obvious candidates like too much coffee.
According to Gartner, the top five issues concerning IT leaders in Australia are sourcing and selection problems, developing enterprise architectures, getting buy-in for their projects, implementing business intelligence, and working out strategies for mobile applications.
In the now time-honoured fashion, none of these have very much to do with technology: they're all about the usual business value mantras. So it's no big surprise that storage barely rates a mention in this category.
As ever, though, somebody still has to keep the lights on. At the operational level, businesses continue to be very concerned about issues such as data recovery, according to Gartner. And a data recovery system is, in simple terms, a whopping great amount of storage connected to some reliable telecommunications and a bunch of policies. The policies are obviously essential, but if the storage system itself fails then the whole exercise is basically pointless.
I'm not arguing that the board needs to consider the niceties of which storage area network approach will best suit the needs of the individual enterprise. But a little more respect and consideration for the category wouldn't go astray. After all, these people will be the first to complain if they get a narky message telling them that they've exceeded the company-mandated limit for e-mail storage.