The valuable features are just the simplicity of expanding the hardware when you need to and containerizing everything into a single platform.
On FlexPod, we are using Cisco collaboration. Not just Cisco, but other collaborator tools as well. Collaboration is our focus, versus general data storage. So we use it for anything from call manager to contact center, to call reporting.
Improvements to My Organization:
The collaboration is a very niche group. They focus on voice and do not focus on storage. Their focus is on phones and application. I wanted to keep their focus there. I don't want them to worry about the data, the storage, the drives, the servers, and all that hardware. Those are the biggest benefits. For me, the benefit is insuring that they continue focusing on the work that they need to do and not worry about the hardware. The hardware is so reliable and just easy to use.
Room for Improvement:
A single pane of glass to manage all of the components. As you know, FlexPod has multiple components from Cisco, to Vmware, to NetApp. I would like to have a single pane of glass from which you could monitor.a
Stability has been great so far. We had it in place 9-10 months now, but we're also a platinum partner as far as the service. That way we can receive monitoring. In case one the drive fails, a new drive is shipped, and somebody even comes in and puts it in for you.
We haven't grown yet, but that is why we purchased it. It is to easily expand when we need it.
We haven't used technical support yet.
We were coming to the end-of-life with our hardware, and we needed a platform that could easily grow. We were using the traditional stand-alone servers. We then went to the Cisco C-series, then we started virtualizing, and then we needed something bigger.
I was responsible for the initial setup and it was a breeze. Everything came shipped, plugged-in, and ready to go.
Other Solutions Considered:
We evaluated IBM, Vblock, and Nutanix.
The factors that made us go with FlexPod were the components that were in FlexPod, NetApp being a big one of those, and Cisco being the other big name. When you think about storage, you think NetApp. There are a few others out there. When you think about routing switching, you typically think Cisco.
Cisco has done a great job coming into the server environment, and I believe in developing partnerships with companies and putting their weight behind it. These companies will continue to perform in in the future. Think about who you would invest in the stock market. Who are you going to put your money in?
Another large hospital, certainly, should focus on the longevity and the simplicity of the solution. I'm really all about the simplicity of it. I have to keep things simple. In IT, we have a habit of making things very complicated, and it's really difficult to change your thinking to keep things smoothly.
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