Using Analytics To Face The Challenge Of Increasingly Complex IT Environments

Analytics

Today’s IT environments are more complicated – and confusing – than ever before, and it’s likely that events such as the explosion in the number of hybrid environments and the greater uptake of SaaS within enterprises mean that things are only going to get more complex before they simplify. This greater complexity will also mean that it will be much harder to detect and contain IT issues when they arise – after all, you can’t manage what you can’t measure.

A survey that Nexthink carried out recently with ITSM professionals revealed that almost two thirds (65%) of IT service disruption issues were reported by end-users before being detected by back-end monitoring tools, and fewer than half (48%) felt they were able to tackle IT issues before they had a wider impact on their business.

In addition, a recently commissioned study by Forrester Consulting revealed that more than a third of companies experience daily issues in performance and availability which have a direct impact on their business, and two fifths said that it can often take anywhere between an hour and a full day to identify the root cause of such issues. The study suggested that, as a result of this, services could potentially be out of action for a cumulative downtime running into millions of hours.

Real-Time Analytics

It’s clear therefore that, in order to untangle the growing complexity of enterprise IT and ensure high levels of IT satisfaction, organisations need to embrace new approaches and innovative techniques focussed on real-time analytics and clear visualisation of each end-point. IT Operations Analytics, or ITOA, is a form of real-time analytics which, among other functions, allows ITSM teams to diagnose and pro-actively fix the issues before more end-users are impacted.

In the event of a problem on the infrastructure, ITOA can quickly and easily tell exactly who was impacted, when the incident occurred, and how long they were affected. A combination of real-time monitoring, analytics and visualisation can see past IT complexity to identify the root cause of disruptions in just a matter of moments.

The advanced analytics used by ITOA tools directly capture vast volumes of data generated by an organisation’s various endpoints and IT processes. This is then aggregated and analysed to provide ITSM teams with full visibility into performance across their organisation’s IT infrastructure, automatically identifying and isolating inefficiencies, disruptions and failures as they occur – often before the end-user is even aware of them.

End-User Perspective

In addition, by employing ITOA tools that offer an end-user perspective, ITSM teams will have a graphical view of the current state of the IT infrastructure along with all and any devices connected to it. ITOA will enable them to look back to any given point in time, and review the activity history of a particular device, allowing them to spot any changes that have been made, such as previously installed applications.

In doing so, it will be possible for the ITSM team to identify and isolate a particular issue on a device, before going on to identify any other devices on the infrastructure with a similar configuration. This precise focus will then allow pre-emptive measures to be put in place before related issues affect other users elsewhere in the organisation.

The insight and improved resolution time that ITOA brings will help ITSM teams to become more pro-active and predictive in their outlook, identifying, diagnosing and fixing issues as they occur and before more end-users are affected. According to a survey, just over a half (55%) of ITSM teams currently employ analytics for insight into their IT infrastructure. However, as they face larger and ever more complex IT infrastructures, there’s growing evidence that greater adoption should be encouraged.

Poul has responsibility for corporate, partner and field marketing worldwide at Nexthink, working closely with product marketing to align strategy and with sales for lead generation activities. He has over 20 years of executive management experience at TriActive, Altiris, Computing Edge, Computer Associates, and Digital with strong background in routes-to-market strategy for hyper-growth. During his time at Altiris, Poul served as VP of Product Strategy and Marketing and developed the concept of IT Lifecycle Management for PCs. From 2000 to 2005, Altiris grew revenues from $8M to over $250M with leading partners HP, Dell, IBM and Microsoft.