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21 Dec

What's Driving IT Performance Management Projects in 2012

Keyboard with a Key That Reads Project Management

Important to our growth is that we continually align with key new IT projects for enterprises and telecommunications providers, where there are new risks and unmet management needs. For these new services or technology project rollouts, complete and immediate operational visibility is required. How else can you assure and prove service levels while creating your new compelling customer experiences and improving operational efficiencies?

Let’s look at some of the key trends that IT Operations and DevOps teams must contend with and how they put increased importance on monitoring the performance of their networks and services, and how we can help them become IT superheros:

1.) The Consumerization of IT

The consumerization of IT is already impacting enterprise networks and cloud infrastructure. Only a few years ago, the mantra was “bring your work home,” and now its “bring your home or your own device to work” or BYOD. The influx of users choosing to multi-task and work from their own tablets, smartphones and laptops presents new and immediate headaches for the network manager and has a significant impact on security and performance, especially on their Wi-Fi networks. Users also want to seamlessly replicate their app store experience on their devices, and degradation in capabilities and performance from their consumer experience will reflect on the IT department.

For mobile operators, this trend also presents an issue. Personal use is one thing, but the business workload presents additional traffic demands with different usage patterns.

Mobile Operators will quickly realize the need to monitor and plan for new types of traffic.

2.) Unified Communications

Despite the many benefits VoIP technology offers, independent research firm Nemartes found that in 2010, only 17% of companies had fully deployed VoIP technology. But one thing is for sure – VoIP deployments increased signficantly in 2011. And as enterprises engage on projects to converge voice, data and video onto a single network, a systemic view of performance and the need for pre-deployment assessment, and pre-, intra- and post-call visibility will quickly move to the top of the operations team’s agenda. Complete and immediate visibility to VoIP and video traffic ensures that the IT operations team is able to proactively identify performance bottlenecks or an application or device consuming too much bandwidth and resolve the issue accordingly.

3.) Cloud Infrastructure

There’s no escaping the cloud. Some industries have welcomed it with open arms, while others edge cautiously towards its adoption. But whichever camp you’re in, it’s not going away and cloud environments come with their own set of performance monitoring challenges. One key challenge is to have sufficient visibility across the unified fabric to understand how resources are performing and, crucially, whether the cloud services have sufficient resources to provide the service levels required.

4.) Ethernet Services

Ethernet services are quickly replacing legacy T1/E1 links for enterprise connectivity and for mobile backhaul. Enterprises have turned to mobile network and cable operators and Ethernet exchanges for corporate connectivity, versus traditional leased lines or point to point WAN technologies. This transition increases the possibility of service failure points and bottlenecks, making end-to-end visibility of latency, jitter, and packet loss more important than ever. Change is never easy but it’s harder when you don’t have visibility of your new service levels as you reduce your operation costs.

Alternatively, for moble network operators and Ethernet service providers, the bandwidth and service level demands continue to increase at phenomenal rates. Monitoring the performance of the mobile backhaul or ethernet services infrastructure is paramount for delivering the levels of service your customers demand.

5.) Low Latency

The rapid evolution of high-frequency trading and algorithmic trading in the financial services market has only served to increase the emphasis on the assurance of consistently high levels of technical and business performance. Traditional tools without the ability to poll or gather and visualize data in sub-second rates leaves them blind to short duration events and often their only way of knowing something occurred is when transaction rates drop or fail. With transaction cycles in general getting shorter all the time, network operations teams are facing up to the reality of needing to monitor the occurrence of micro spikes – dramatic increases in utilization within a very small timeframe impacts high value transactions. Further, because every microsecond counts in the financial services industry (perhaps more so than in any other sector) network managers are in a constant fight to eradicate any causes of latency.

Take the Next Step

That’s a lot for the network managers and operations teams of to consider from a performance management perspective. If any of the above are at the top of your New Year’s resolutions, why not drop us a line and see if SevOne can help achieve your goals, reduce your risk and add complete and immediate visibility to your 2012 outlook, making it a whole lot brighter for you and your career!

Mike Miracle is SVP and CMO for SevOne, @mjmiracle on twitter.

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