How many terabytes do you manage?

December 1, 2009 – Forrester Research analyst Andrew Reichman recently wrote a report that provides a lot of advice on how to use key performance indicators (KPIs) to measure the efficiency of your storage operations/personnel, noting that building an effective storage environment is a balancing act between performance, reliability and efficiency.

Cruise to How Efficient is Your Storage Environment to read the full report ($499), which was co-authored by Forrester analysts Stephanie Balaouras and Margaret Ryan, but one area of the report that jumped out at me was the section on the TB/FTE metric. (FTE stands for either full-time employee or full-time equivalent.)

Basically, TB/FTE is a measure of the quantity of primary storage per staff member. To get the number, you divide the total number of raw TBs by the total number of permanent, contract, and professional-services employees engaged in managing storage.

Forrester’s Reichman notes that “a few years ago the accepted best practice benchmark for TB/FTE hovered around 35 to 40, but since then most storage environments have grown significantly without adding staff.” Of course, that’s due partly to the IT mandate, or mantra, “to do more with less.” According to Reichman, the best practice benchmark for TB/FTE today is approximately 100.

Assuming that you calculate metrics such as TB/FTE (and I realize that most firms don’t), drop me an email at daves@pennwell.com and let me know what the TB/FTE metric is at your shop. Of course, I’ll keep the responses anonymous, but I’d like to get a feel for how many terabytes are actually under management per employee for a future post or article.


posted by: Dave Simpson

Dave Simpson, Editor-in-Chief
by Dave Simpson

Dave Simpson has been the Editor-in-Chief of InfoStor since its inception in 1997. He previously held editorial positions at publications such as Datamation, Systems Integration, and Digital News and Review. He can be contacted at dsimpson@quinstreet.com

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