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Behind the scenes of Dell’s Global Data Protection


Ruya Atac-Barrett

Ruya has more than twenty-five years of high technology product experience in the areas of cloud solutions, converged infrastructure, data management, virtualization, servers, storage, and data protection.

An experienced and innovative leader, she has had demonstrated success in driving start-up and large technology company product management, product development and marketing functions and managing teams across a range of activities, channels, industries, and geographic regions.

Currently, she is the Vice President of Product Marketing for the Dell EMC Data Protection Division responsible for messaging and positioning Dell EMC’s market-leading portfolio of products. Previously, she has held various roles at Dell EMC, VCE (a joint venture of VMware, Cisco, and EMC), Hewlett Packard, Storage Networks and Hittite Microwave.

What are some of the key takeaways from the study, both globally and for Canada?


To address our global study participants, we see that organizations are managing more data than ever. We also see that they are still facing a lot of disruption at increasing costs. This risk of disruption is even greater. It’s essential to note that the more you value data, the more harm disruption has.

Organizations are looking to improve data protection and they sometimes inadvertently look at multiple vendors. The reality is that many vendors actually lead to less secure data protection systems and businesses have been slow to pick up on that.

The more prolific use of the cloud for data protection is really portraying what the future needs are going to be based around. Businesses need to invest and partner with folks that are making investments for future needs.

For Canada, one of the areas we found interesting is that Canadian businesses manage more data than their global peers. The 2018 study showed that Canadian businesses are managing 11.45 TB of data which is significantly higher than the global averages. In fact, there has been a 941% growth since 2016.

Another data point that we found very interesting was that 97% of Canadian businesses see the value in data and 33% of companies are investing in monetizing with data. They understand that technology is ultimately what more and more users are going to interface with.  44% of Canadian businesses that were surveyed are struggling to find suitable data protection for things like AI. This certainly shows Canadian businesses’ maturity with respect to leveraging technology, and being at the forefront of advancements in technology.


What does this mean for Canadian SMEs?

As all of your readers probably know, SMEs make up the vast majority of businesses in Canada. We can tell that SMEs are looking to propel their businesses forward from an IT perspective. One of the key takeaways is the digitization of processes. They are embracing the collection and storage of data. SMEs continue to discover how to monetize new data and they have new sources of data that they feel that they are unable to protect. They understand that without the right technology, they face the risk of data breaches that will, of course, have a serious impact on their business.


What is Dell EMC’s strategy moving forward to address the takeaways from the study?

We have done this study 3 times over the course of 6 years (every other year). We invest in the study to understand where we see customers’ needs and requirements in the future, which will ultimately drive our technology investments.

The loss of data itself is more costly than downtime, which was a very interesting finding. As I mentioned earlier, this year’s survey confirmed that customers seeking multiple vendors have led to greater issues and a less secure data protection system.

Our strategy is to deliver the entire spectrum of data protection technology to our clients. Our portfolio includes a bulletproof solution for addressing cyber-attacks.

Data protection solutions need to support employment models, among many others. We create purpose-built architecture that delivers that flexibility to deal with our customers’ needs.

Our solutions are future proof and future ready. We offer a future proof warranty option so that we’re positioned as the vendor for tomorrow. We have a comprehensive efficiency guarantee, a 3-year warranty, and much more that we offer to our clients to show them that we will be with them every step of the way.


Are Canadian SMEs confident in their data protection infrastructure given the constant news cycle of data breaches occurring?

Canadian SMEs are actually globally less confident than their global peers. The challenges that were presented were around emerging technology and being able to keep up with that rapid growth. Only 11% of Canadian businesses believe that their current protection technology will meet future challenges.


Moving forward, how often will you continue to conduct this study? Every 2 years like you have previously don’t?

After the 2018 study, we sat down with our team and decided to do it more often. We see that trends are rapidly changing and we are getting so much value from the study, which will ultimately direct the strategy of our future investments and the products that we’ll be building for our clients. We are moving towards doing the study once a year.


What were you most surprised about in the 2018 study?

The shocking thing for me is that we see very few customers that have simplified and consolidated their data protection vendors. The exponential increase in risk that this brings to the table is unbelievable. For me personally, that was really eye-opening. The other thing that was interesting was the opportunity of loss of business and impacting customer loyalty due to a lack of strong data protection.

I think we are making great progress – the leaders in this space increased from 1% in 2016 to 10% in 2018. Businesses have more data, and they understand the importance of protection.


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