Hitachi Data Systems APAC and Global CTOs Reveal Top Trends for 2017

Growing Gap Between Digital Leaders and Laggards Demonstrates the Importance of Staying Ahead of the Curve

Sydney — December 1, 2016 – Hitachi Data Systems (HDS), a wholly owned subsidiary of Hitachi, Ltd. (TSE:6501), has released its top business and technology trends for 2017. According to Russell Skingsley, Asia Pacific chief technology, Hitachi Data Systems, and Hubert Yoshida, chief technology officer of Hitachi Data Systems, digital transformation will continue to dominate enterprise IT strategies in 2017 as businesses seek to leverage major technology trends to achieve their digital goals and objectives.

According to a new Forbes Insight report, the gap between digital leaders and laggards is growing, with 61% of digital leaders expecting to see their business significantly transformed in the next two years, while only 47% of non-leaders have the same expectation.

#1: Productivity Gains Will Be More About People, Process and Business Outcomes
Despite the dramatic growth of new technology over the past 10 years, productivity has declined compared to the previous 10 years, according to the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). According to Yoshida, this is because new processes have not kept up with new technologies.

While IT has become more cost efficient in managing infrastructure, this has not translated into improvements in business goods and services. IT will begin to be measured on business outcomes rather than by how many terabytes can be managed by one full time employee (FTE). The promise of digital transformation is to reverse this trend in productivity, with a focus on processes that provide agile infrastructure, cloud, and the benefits of DevOps to speed the development and deployment of applications and services with fewer defects and wasted effort. People are also an important part of this transformation as customers are more empowered and the workforce has become more diverse and fluid.

"The biggest benefit of agile infrastructure and cloud delivery models is the empowerment of those with the most business insight and most innovative ideas to drive their own technology projects. It's really about putting the power of innovation into the hands of those with the best ideas," said Skingsley.

#2: Accelerating Transition to Cloud
Cloud-first strategies are the foundation for staying relevant in a fast-paced world, according to Ed Anderson, research vice president at Gartner. The Cloud Readiness Index 2017, released annually by the Asia Cloud Computing Association, puts New Zealand and Australia in third and fourth place respectively, ahead of countries such as Germany, the UK and the US.

"It is clear that the predominant cloud model for the foreseeable future will be hybrid, as most understand the agility benefits of cloud but are not willing to move entirely to public cloud at this point. We expect this to continue throughout 2017," said Skingsley.

As a result, IT managers across APAC will focus on developing skills in cloud monitoring, cloud workload performance and security management, and cloud capacity management. Instead of buying infrastructure from different vendors and knitting them together with management software, IT will want access to the converged systems required to deliver infrastructure as a service. These will enable enterprises to drive out even more cost and streamline infrastructure operations even further by combining converged solutions, such as Hitachi Unified Compute Platform (UCP), with cloud management portals, such as VMware vRealize, to deliver a pre-engineered solution for public, private, and hybrid cloud via a single management interface.

#3: Bimodal IT
Bimodal IT refers to two modes of IT:

  • Mode 1: Traditional — emphasises safety, accuracy and availability.
  • Mode 2: Nonlinear — emphasises agility and speed.

In the same way that hybrid cloud will continue to be the predominant model for years to come, so too will bimodal IT continue to be necessary. While many may wish to simply do away with legacy application stacks and start afresh, the reality of the need for business continuity built on well understood and supported mission-critical systems continues. IT must be able to manage both modes and implement systems that can bridge between them. Converged infrastructure solutions can modernise Mode 1 systems and bridge to Mode 2 systems via orchestration and cloud ready interfaces.

Skingsley said, "From a storage perspective it is important that data from both IT modes can be leveraged, so organisations will look more to systems that can bridge the gap between the two. This requires the ability to present cloud protocols, the capability to be instantiated on-premise or in public clouds and to facilitate data mobility between these environments."

#4 Real-Time Analysis, Hadoop, Visualization, and Predictive Analytics Will Be a Major Focus
Predictive analytics is becoming more prevalent as businesses try to anticipate the events that affect their business. This trend will see the expanded use of in-memory databases, and streaming analytics platforms to provide real-time analysis of developing trends. Real-time analytics will be connected with Hadoop analytics for further analysis, and results will be stored in an object store for the possibility of future analysis. Analytic tools such as Pentaho will combine structured and unstructured data from different sources to provide a 360-degree view for analysis.

"The highly disruptive digital juggernauts teach us that the ability to wield data effectively is extremely valuable. Many of these businesses are fundamentally data-driven with a simple interface and insightful business logic. Traditional enterprises realise now that they have not used their valuable data as effectively as they might have," said Yoshida.

#5: Smart IT: The Integration of IT and OT
Operational technology (OT) data includes data from sensors or logs that can augment the data from IT to provide a more complete understanding of an event or process. This will be the foundation for smart banks, smart retail, smart transportation, smart manufacturing, etc. Retailers are already at the forefront, combining operational data from in-store sensors and social media to optimise purchasing and supply chain systems. More businesses will be looking for data integration tools such as Pentaho to integrate their IT and OT data.

"The integration of IT and OT with analytics is the first step toward the internet of things (IoT). Today, IoT requires data scientists and researchers with deep domain expertise and most projects are in the proof-of-concept stage. In 2017 we will be at the stage where we have the recipe for IoT projects, like train as a service, or Industry 4.0. Hitachi Data Systems, along with other divisions in Hitachi and outside partners, is developing an IoT core platform, Lumada, to develop these "recipes" and deliver baked IoT solutions that are open, adaptable, verified and secure," said Yoshida.

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About Hitachi Data Systems
Hitachi Data Systems, a wholly owned subsidiary of Hitachi, Ltd., offers an integrated portfolio of services and solutions that enable digital transformation through enhanced data management, governance, mobility and analytics. We help global organizations open new revenue streams, increase efficiencies, improve customer experience and ensure rapid time to market in the digital age. Only Hitachi Data Systems powers the digital enterprise by integrating the best information technology and operational technology from across the Hitachi family of companies. We combine this experience with Hitachi expertise in the internet of things to deliver the exceptional insights business and society need to transform and thrive. Visit us at

About Hitachi, Ltd.
Hitachi, Ltd. (TSE: 6501), headquartered in Tokyo, Japan, delivers innovations that answer society's challenges. The company's consolidated revenues for fiscal 2015 (ended March 31, 2016) totaled 10,034.3 billion yen ($88.8 billion). The Hitachi Group is a global leader in the Social Innovation Business, and it has approximately 335,000 employees worldwide. Through collaborative creation, Hitachi is providing solutions to customers in a broad range of sectors, including power & infrastructure systems, information & telecommunication systems, construction machinery, high functional materials & components, automotive systems, healthcare and others. For more information on Hitachi, please visit the company's website at

Media Contact:
Isabel Wagner
Hitachi Data Systems
+61 2 9325 3319

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