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EMC looking to help companies manage shifting data environment

Changing users, regulations and data creating new requirements from information management says EMC strategy chief

EMC looking to help companies manage shifting data environment
Lewis said that companies need to follow a case management approach to combining diverse data

Mark Lewis, chief strategy offices for EMC, has described the challenges facing IT organisations to manage their data and EMC's role in helping them do that at EMC Momentum 2010, which opened in Lisbon today.

Speaking in a keynote presentation, Lewis spelled out the changing face of the IT environment, and the growing need for companies to change the way they handle data across the enterprise.

Lewis, who was recently promoted to the CSO role having previously been president of EMC's Information Intelligence Group, said that the industry face three main challenges: the three dimensional growth of data, in terms of volume growth, the richness of data across new formats and the dispersion of data across multiple devices; the continuing build up of regulations and regulatory requirements around data management, and the emergence of a new type of user.

This new type of user has very different characteristics from previous business IT users, said Lewis, with a blurring of the platforms used for work and social life, especially the growing use of social networks to communicate and collaborate. New users are also a lot more inclined to self-provisioning, to acquire solutions such as software-as-a-service applications to handle work task without the company IT department driving decisions, and the propensity of users to choose their own tools for work such as iPads and BlackBerry. The change means that the IT department no longer dictates what can and can't be used by information workers, Lewis said.

"It used to be IT controlled everything. It is not happening anymore, IT is a service, IT is a strategic partner, but IT is not in control users have the power and the flexibility," he said.

The industry also now required a 360 degree of users, meaning that silos of information and application data need to be integrated, so that company's can access fuller, more indepth data to support decision making, along with the growth of cloud computing and the mobile internet to further change how businesses interact with their data.

be new integrated environment, one platform only, independent of devices,
our mission remains to help get maximum leverage from information
Lewis said that EMC's strategy would remain to enable companies to get maximum leverage from their information, but that the company would look to deliver cloud-ready solutions, with a case management-based approach across multiple platforms.

"Our approach across those three environments is very simple - from an information infrastructure perspective, we are going to be cloud optimised; we are going to embrace the cloud," said Lewis.

"Our job really is to do two things really well, one provide a great platform around content management, information centric, case-based applications - we want to be the best application to do that; secondly, for information governance and compliance it is very important and it is something we will stay very focused on," he added. "Finally our role in the information interface area, is to provide the framework and the right tools, so that as we build applications we can capitalize that and exploit that to all devices and environments."

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