22 September 2018

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How can Virtualization Help SMEs?

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Most of the people believed and advocated that virtualization was ideal only for larger enterprises. But, today, SMEs are implementing virtualization every day and using it to reap benefits. Recent forecasts predict that “Global mobile virtualization market is projected to grow at a CAGR of 21.3 percent between 2016-2023.

There is also a misconception that virtualization involves the tedious task of implementation and maintenance that warrants special skills and that it is an expensive proposition. However, it can help you cut down on overheads and expenses of a business that are usually made to buy hardware and its maintenance.


SMEs run on a tight budget, where hiring an entire IT department or investing in complex systems and equipment is not possible. Though their IT requirements are like large enterprises, the scale is smaller. SMEs are often on the lookout for IT systems that are flexible, fit their budget, are easy to scale and maintain while offering maximum functionality and adaptability. In such cases, Virtualization comes into the picture. It facilitates the isolation of applications, servers, data and eliminates the dependency on a physical device.

The growing need to separate private and work data, growing mobile industry, robustness and security help to push the market of mobile virtualization. Mobile virtualization allows several operating systems or virtual machines to run instantly on a cell phone or allied wireless device.  This feature augments the demand and market size of mobile virtualization, worldwide. It uses a hypervisor to create a secure separation between the hardware and software operations.

Virtualization has been used widely for several years in other fields such as data servers and personal computers. Each business or enterprise strives to make higher profits and offer quality solutions or services to their clients. SMEs are no exception; they are on a constant lookout for better technology and business plans that provide minimal overheads and maximum productivity.

Gartner envisages the worldwide public cloud services market to grow at a CAGR of 18% in 2017 to $246.8 billion, from $209.2 billion in 2016. The Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) is likely to grow 36.8% in 2017 and reach $34.6 billion. Spending on IT-as-a-Service for software, data centers, software services will increase to $547 billion by the end of 2018. Deloitte Global foresees procurement of IT technologies accelerating in the next 2-3 years from the current $361 billion to $547 billion. At this growth rate, the IT-as-a-Service will signify more than half of the IT spends by the 2021/2022.

Look at the benefits that existing SMEs vouch for after integrating visualization in their business:

Flexibility and Mobility: Gone are the days when people and businesses were chained to their desks and physical spaces. The current working environment needs flexibility, and virtualization of servers and desktops means large groups of individuals spread across diverse locations can get remote access. It also means that information on a computer is accessible from anywhere over any connection, thereby translating to increased productivity.

Lower Operational Costs and Overheads: When you consolidate multiple servers, it reduces the need for multiple physical servers, thereby enabling SMEs to enjoy benefits like reduction in power consumption, increased computing power in a minimal floor space. An enterprise can enjoy IT solutions that are cost and energy efficient. When you make use of Cloud based services like Cloud Computing, you pay only for the capacity you need, and all you need is a single computer and an Internet connection.  Also, when you do away with the hardware, the cost of maintaining it decreases.

Disaster Management and Preparedness:  Every business, whether it is big or small, in case of an emergency, needs a quick and reliable recovery plan. Virtualization offers a rapid recovery option since the files are on a virtual system, they are restored to any hardware, irrespective of any physical device or location. Hence, you can execute an automated disaster recovery process that is precise, quick and reliable. Virtual servers not only ensure that the smooth functioning of your enterprise remains uninterrupted but also allows for testing of disaster and data recovery plans at cost-effective rates.

Reduction in Downtime: Virtual IT systems translate into zero or minimal maintenance activity, which is certainly good news for SMEs for whom business continuity and minimal downtime is a must to keep the overheads down. Data recovery, data protection, quick and efficient disaster management plans ensure a reduction in downtime and business can be conducted without interruptions.

Storage and Security: When we consider IT systems, data storage and data security are significant. Virtualization gives companies the freedom to add more disk space without making changes to the existing data. It also reduces wastage of storage space and utilizes network storage efficiently.

Simplification of IT Management:  Many SMEs shy away from virtualization as they believe it means more complex systems and the need for IT specialists. But virtualization simplifies the entire process and the managers who spend a considerable productive time on routine administrative tasks can concentrate on core business activities that truly matter.

Every business has a specific set of goals and demands; a virtualization plan depends on the respective business. You need to implement solutions that make sense for your business and budget. You can implement server consolidation, storage virtualization or opt for client virtualization. Though the concept of virtualization and scoping a solution that perfectly fits your business can sound daunting, it is certainly not. With appropriate research and planning an SME can indeed adapt and assimilate virtualization into its diverse business processes.

In a nutshell, Virtualization offers solutions that cater to your existing business needs and prepares you to scale the needs of tomorrow.





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