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In their quest to deliver higher margins and more shareholder value, senior management teams are scrutinizing all areas of operating expense, including the operations portion of the IT department. Every area of IT operations is under scrutiny, particularly mainframes. At the same time, expectations for IT service levels are higher than ever. The IBM mainframe hosts over $1 trillion worth of business-critical application investments and 80 to 90 percent of the world's largest databases, and has become the central platform for the most important SOA initiatives and developments at many enterprises, according to a May 2008 report from Credit Suisse. Executives and managers responsible for IT infrastructures face a paradox: deliver higher service levels to support the business while cutting costs.
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