Since NetApp relaunched Cloud Data Sense as a multi-purpose data governance tool in 2021, a wide variety of customers have been putting the product through its paces. One of these is UK-based data management company Gardner Systems, which has been a trusted NetApp partner for more than 10 years.
In response to customer demand for a solution with data governance capabilities, Gardner added Cloud Data Sense to its portfolio of IT services.
As a result, a number of its own customers have been leveraging the service to get insights into their data to help meet compliance, governance, management, and security objectives.
In this post, you'll discover more about the company, what Cloud Data Sense brings to its offering, what its customers say about the product, and how the business is working with NetApp to drive a roadmap for new functionality.
About the Company
Gardner Systems is a Liverpool-based IT reseller, consultancy, and training and support provider with a broad range of expertise that includes servers, storage, networking, cloud migration, and data governance.
The company was formed in 1985, but has adapted over the following 30 years as the IT landscape has changed and new technologies have evolved.
It provides services to organizations across the world and has a particularly strong UK client base in both the corporate and public sector—supporting them with leading-edge solutions in virtualization, data protection and recovery, business continuity, and data security.
How Gardner Benefits from Its NetApp Partnership
Gardner's partnership with NetApp plays a key role in helping the company's customers to modernize its IT and transition to hybrid- and multicloud infrastructure.
NetApp's data fabric capabilities offer Gardner a consistent and highly streamlined approach to data management across disparate endpoint, cloud, and on-premises deployments. It gives the company a way to quickly and efficiently move its data as business needs change—whether between on-premises data center and the cloud or between different cloud providers.
Gardner also leverages NetApp's storage efficiencies and automated data lifecycle management to keep both its customers' and its own costs down.
One of the common issues that crops up in Gardner's conversations with its customers is how the company can better manage, secure, govern, and control their data. But finding tools that allow them to do this efficiently and effectively is no easy challenge.
Gardner needs to consider a whole range of factors—from ease of deployment and management overhead to value for money and the features and integrations that are available. In this case, according to Gardner, Cloud Data Sense ticks all the right boxes.
Data Sense provides functionality that's relevant to Gardner’s customers and their needs, helping them to start their journey of better data management. The company therefore sees Cloud Data Sense as a valuable addition to its offering, making a telling difference to the service it provides as a NetApp partner.
Gardner is unique in that, as an MSP, it enables us to get a wide range of feedback about Data Sense and how it affects different verticals. Let’s take a look at what some of these users have said.
What one customer says about the user interface
Cloud Data Sense is intended for use by anyone involved in the day-to-day management of your data assets—from storage and IT admin teams to information security and data protection professionals. With such a broad base of users, NetApp designed the solution to be as quick and easy to use as possible.
One of Gardner’s customers said that the highlight of Data Sense was its user interface, calling it intuitive and easy to manage. Using Data Sense, the organization is able to deploy the data governance solutions they need without investing the kind of effort that some other vendor software requires.
What a public sector client says about deployment
With Cloud Data Sense, you don't need to install agents on your target systems. This makes it a more lightweight and less intrusive alternative to agent-based solutions, which can have potential privacy and security issues.
Another Gardner client is a public sector team that pursued Data Sense because of its flexibility and its ease of deployment. That deployment simplicity seamlessly integrated Data Sene with their on-prem infrastructure without any agents needing to be involved. That quick deployment reduced risk for the public sector team, and immediately returned valuable insights.
What a medium enterprise says about cost
Cloud Data Sense is free to NetApp Cloud Backup customers and available to other users on a highly competitive pay-as-you-go (PAYG) pricing model.
At a medium-sized UK enterprise Gardner supports, that cost savings made Data Sense stand out. Given the flexibility of the tool, the company was surprised to find that Data Sense usage costs were just 5% of the average rate of similar products from other vendors.
Roadmap to Data Governance Success
Gardner has been working closely with the Cloud Data Sense team, who listen carefully to the company's experience of using the solution and those of its customers.
Their feedback has helped NetApp deliver the best possible solution for its customers and offer the functionality they actually need.
Moreover, it has also helped shape NetApp's roadmap for development of the product so it can continue to enhance and refine a data governance platform that's fit for the modern enterprise both today and long into the future.