End-users are still confused by Information Lifecycle Management (ILM), especially when it comes to how compliance issues fit into the strategy, according to users at a recent storage event.
But channel players and analysts believe compliance will drive the need for customers to implement an ILM strategy.
ILM manages data from when it is first received until its disposal. New laws that may have an impact on it include Sarbanes-Oxley, Basel II and the Freedom of Information Act.
Marcus Hill, general manager of storage at BT Retail, said 'information risk management' may be a better term for ILM because it is compliance-driven and involves people, not just software and hardware. "ILM per se is a myth; a destination at best," he said.
But Claus Egge, programme director of European storage research at IDC, said: "There is always a problem when a concept emerges that isn't well-defined. ILM is one of them.
"Compliance will be a great driver for ILM. It will clarify for businesses which files they need to keep and for how long. Compliance is not an IT exercise; it's a corporate exercise, but it will help fuel ILM."
Paul Barlow, managing director of VAR Equanet, said: "There has been a lot of hype about compliance and ILM. IT managers are inclined towards compliance projects, but this goes hand in hand with ILM.
"They don't want to put a lot of money into high-end storage, but don't realise the most cost-effective way is ILM."
Mark Maby, ILM strategy director UK at vendor StorageTek, said: "ILM is a big project for any business to undertake, but once issues such as compliance and email use come together, ILM simplifies a storage strategy."
CRN's Nima Green caught up with Chris Labrey for a quick Q&A at CRN's recent European Channel Leadership Forum
We caught up with the Atea chief exec at CRN's European Channel Leadership Forum in London
Andy Gillett has been appointed GM for the UK and Ireland
UK is one of two countries to see rollout of vendor's newest subscription service