As technology advance and organizations face increasing demands for efficiency in their business, their IT infrastructures have become increasingly complex. Applications are far more interdependent than ever before, and their business tools, whether hardware or software, are making up a diverse web of systems from a wide range of vendors.
The challenges of dealing with this complexity are something that businesses have to deal with on a daily basis. In a recent study, nearly 50% of global business leaders have called “increased reliance on technology” the No. 1 risk to their organizations. Another 37% said the “business complexity of the organization” is their top risk.
All the same, businesses need to deliver high performance and high availability, typically without accompanying increase in budgets
to accomplish these goals.
So how can companies cope with the dual challenges of managing an increasingly complex infrastructure, while remaining focused on achieving business goals and delivering high quality products and services to their clients?
Organizations are increasingly turning to third party providers that delivers advanced monitoring and resolution services for your IT assets.
If you work with a knowledgeable vendor —one that is familiar with your infrastructure — there are big advantages to taking this approach, including:
- Lower total cost of ownership
- Higher availability of applications
- Reduced downtime, (planned or unplanned)
- Reduced workload on your own people to deal with IT issues
- Improved application performance
- Ability to proactively monitor and thereby mitigating issues as they arise, as opposed to after it’s too late
An advanced monitoring and resolution service should consist of 24/7 secure remote monitoring and resolution delivered by skilled engineers using proven practices.
The service should offer rigorous security certifications to ensure remote experts safely deliver proactive monitoring and administration of internal applications and hardware systems.
Don’t think of it simply as an outsourcing solution. Rather, think of it as a team of experts supplementing your own team, providing a number of products and solutions that it would be next to impossible to maintain in-house.
Because of the complexity of today’s systems, it is often difficult to identify exactly where and why systems fail. This can result in dissatisfied customers and less productive workers.
These problems can be severe enough to put the organization at risk. With proactive monitoring and advanced support, however, the organization will be made aware when (and why) vulnerabilities occur.
An advanced monitoring service means looking after performance or availability of all your critical systems and applications. This monitoring can extend through your entire infrastructure — applications, databases, servers, storage, networks and backup. Problems, can be addressed using best practices for incident, change and problem management.
As a client, you can choose to deploy the services according to your own needs, from full remote services to full onsite solutions or some combination.
The process of monitoring and remediating problems within your IT, you will learn a lot about your risks and vulnerabilities. Are there peak usage times that are impacting application slowing down the performance of mission-critical applications? The key is to continuously improve performance and availability.
You should meet regularly with your professional services team to review processes and set strategies for continual performance improvement. You should also have a plan that includes regular hardware and software health checks.
Your company gets the revenue as well as interacts with your customers through your applications. When performance slows down, the entire business suffers and is put at risk for lost revenues, lost profits, lost customers and general damage to your brand.
Advanced monitoring and resolution services lets you keep track of application performance at all times. Monitoring agents create alerts when systems or applications are under-performing, so you can fix issues before they impact the company further.
End-user monitoring takes the service a step further, whereby you can collect, process and present details — even going so far as to track user requests and follow them through to resolutions.
You can collect information on the length of time it takes to complete a business transaction and the length of time it takes to search, select and pay for a specific product. You can easily see how you can improve revenue and profits.
Predictive incident management diagnostics lets your vendor partner identify issues with configurations and performance before they become full-scale problems.
For example, advanced monitoring lets a service provider leverage complex algorithmic models and thereby identify potential issues with individual transactions within the database.
Advanced monitoring and resolution delivers significant improvements in IT support. You can measure the performance in meeting service requests, including trends on how long it takes for repairs to be performed, response by incident type, and reporting and measure performance against standards on all systems, including backup, emergency storage and system uptime.
A third-party supplier will have access to tools, methodologies and best practices your organization may not even be aware of.
Advanced monitoring and resolution is what they do every day, so your organization is always taking advantage of the experience the vendor has gained from working with other businesses, as well as the latest in diagnostic and recovery tools.
They often employ thorough diagnostic tool sets that cover all your systems. By using these tools, they are able to identify and qualify new incidents, automatically compare new incidents with a knowledge base of past incidents, and use the past experiences as the basis to quickly and effectively resolve issues.
Clearly you will want advanced monitoring and resolution to deliver 24/7 support for all your systems, databases and mission-critical applications. But some vendors can also offer more specialized services, such as end-user monitoring; firewall and VPN management; continuous risk assessment application management; and intrusion detection systems to mention but a few.
Because IT has grown in complexity, it is difficult and costly to hire and retain all the in-house expertise required to manage everything.
The other problem comes with internal politics, often resulting in finger-pointing than actual problem solving. An outside vendor gives you not only access to a team of service professionals with deep expertise. They are focused on fixing your problems, and not assigning blame.