A common problem in infrastructure groups is determining the value that we provide to the organization. One common way of thinking about this is in terms of asset utilization. Messages such as “take your servers from 5% utilization to 60%” are very common in virtualization value propositions, but I do not think that capacity utilization is the correct measurement of infrastructure value. That value is derived from being able to run an application at adequate performance levels. It does not matter what the utilization is. Take the following hypothetical scenario measuring performance in CPU or memory:
Both of these systems are running the same application and provide the same benefit to the organization, but the higher utilization solution actually costs more. When thinking about it this way I think that it becomes clear that higher utilization is not a good indicator of infrastructure efficiency in providing value to the organization.