Businesses believe that the network is hampering virtualisation efforts but say that virtualisation directly causes network performance issues.

Research by Computacenter found that 74 per cent of respondents claim the network is central to their IT strategy, but 33 per cent do not consider it before making a technology purchase, risking network downtime, poor performance and inefficient security.

Of those surveyed, 86 per cent admit that pinpointing and solving virtual infrastructure bottlenecks is an issue, and 68 per cent claim they have underestimated the number of network issues arising from virtualisation.

Colin Williams, networking and security practice leader at Computacenter, said: “It is common to see a lack of proactive optimisation directed towards the network, particularly in difficult times when IT decision makers have so many other challenges.

“The inherent problem with the network is that no one notices it until it goes wrong so in many cases it has become a victim of its own reliability. That doesn't however mean it is currently ‘ready' to cope with changing business needs.”