According to an IDG survey, 87% of North American IT decision makers are trying to reduce database management costs, while 35% are evaluating or deploying alternatives to commonly used databases.

The clear majority of IT decision-makers are trying to reduce the hefty management burden of their databases, and many are looking beyond the conventional solutions in the market to do so. As a result, the enterprise database market will become increasingly vulnerable to disruption from organizations offering fresh approaches to database technology, pricing, and licensing.

We partnered with IBM and IDG Research to evaluate organizations’ approaches to database management, surveying 119 North American IT decision makers from a variety of industries and company sizes. A majority (87%) of these are actively attempting to reduce the management costs of their databases using a wide range of different approaches, such as modernizing IT infrastructure with hardware upgrades.

Significantly, over a third (35%) are either evaluating or already deploying alternatives to commonly used enterprise databases, such as Oracle and Microsoft’s SQL Server.

Many CIOs and IT decision-makers are now focused on redirecting resources towards digital transformation and making their organizations fit for the age of cloud computing, predictive analytics, and the Internet of Things. It is against this backdrop that the heavy management load of most conventional databases has become a major concern.

The need to navigate the complex licensing terms, convoluted pricing structures, and legacy technology of many of these solutions is a time and money drain. It creates burdens that distract IT departments from the fundamental task of innovation – whether that’s having to constantly prepare for arbitrary software audits, paying for infrastructure you’re not using due to constricting licensing agreements, or spending time on integrating these databases with new technology. It’s therefore not surprising that one-in-three IT decision makers are looking beyond these standard enterprise database options.

The enterprise database market is starting to look like an industry on the brink of disruption. You’ve got all the key ingredients – dominant incumbents who have become complacent, customers who are locked into expensive and time-consuming solutions, and a dynamic technological landscape which is altering the customer’s priorities and the product’s technical possibilities.

There’s so much opportunity for other enterprise database players to innovate to address these concerns. This is what we are looking to do with Tibero for IBM Linux on Power – offering a cloud-ready, ‘all-in-one-solution’ for complex workloads, with flexible and transparent licensing. Enterprise databases should ultimately be the IT bedrock that enables innovation, not a burden that takes time away from it.