Europe’s largest entertainment and communications company provides television, broadband internet and other services to more than 21 million households.
It’s unfortunate when a network monitoring system goes from being a strategic asset to a significant drag on operations. But that’s exactly what happened to a leading European entertainment and communications company.
The organization’s IT infrastructure needs were expanding rapidly as its strong presence in the U.K. market grew and it gained momentum across Europe. The company was also introducing innovative video and mobile products that placed increased demands on its infrastructure, and created more complex network monitoring requirements. Ensuring a high-quality end user experience during this growth was key to the company’s future success.
The company’s IT team needed to be certain that its infrastructure and network monitoring capabilities were up to the task, but they had real concerns.
“Our legacy system was fine when we first implemented it in 2005,” said the media company’s network assurance manager. “But it clearly wasn’t keeping up. We were using valuable resources just to meet our immediate needs. As for its ability to handle new requirements, we all had serious doubts.”
In discussions with the incumbent vendor, it became clear that changing the old system’s hardware architecture – the limiting factor – was not in the cards. The best the media company’s IT and network operations teams could expect were software updates.
“Performance improvements from those software changes might have been able to take us 12 or even 24 months down the road. But ultimately, we knew we’d hit a brick wall with that system, and continuing to use it would put much of our growth and success at risk. That’s when we decided to investigate other paths forward.”
The company identified four core issues that it needed to address:
- Greater scalability: The organization wanted to be able to poll and manage 50K devices every five minutes, and it needed the capability to double or triple that coverage to support future growth. The firm also wanted a modular design to minimize growth pains, and an architecture that could scale with its network growth.
- Higher performance: Speed at scale was a must-have requirement. Elimination of its sluggish reporting problem was also high on the performance improvement list. The company wanted to cut production times for 95 percent of its reports down to less than 10 seconds.
- More user control: The company wanted a system that enabled end users to do more and developers to do less. Goals included giving users the ability to easily generate any report they needed, manage threshold and alert settings, and change polling frequencies.
- Lower maintenance costs: The company wanted to eliminate costs associated with having an entire development team dedicated to maintaining its legacy system and building work-arounds when it failed to meet current needs.
“We evaluated systems from more than a dozen vendors,” said the network assurance manager. “We ranked them on their architectures, scalability, out-of-the-box features, ease of deployment, quality of support, and other factors. SevOne ranked highest by a significant margin, which made our decision easy.”
Business Benefits and Results
The company has significantly enhanced its network monitoring and management capabilities since switching to the SevOne Data Platform. It has also gained agility, scalability and speed that will enable it to support its network growth and product offering diversification for many years to come.
In addition, many more end users are ‘flying solo’ with the SevOne Data Platform’s automation capabilities and user-friendly UI without any developer involvement.
The client experienced the following benefits after deploying the SevOne Data Platform:
- Unlimited scalability: The SevOne Data Platform has easily accommodated growth of the client’s network from monitoring 30,000 to 45,00 devices over the past two years. The IT team anticipates no problems doubling or even tripling this coverage to handle the network growth it anticipates over the next five years.
- Agility and performance: Of the company’s 45,000 network devices, the SevOne Data Platform is polling 99.9 % of them every five minutes, and the other 0.1% are polled within seconds. That includes 1.2 million objects and over 15 million indicators. “That’s 50,000 indicators being managed every second. Our old system couldn’t handle half of that,” said the network assurance manager.
- Rapid end user adoption: End users have quickly adopted SevOne’s intuitive UI, using it to manage their own threshold and alert settings, and instantly produce an array of reports.
- Time to be proactive: The company’s developers have been able to focus more on building innovative new products without having to build and test endless system work-arounds. They also have far fewer end-user requests to manage.
In summary, SevOne helped this large entertainment and communications company transform their network monitoring capabilities from a liability into a strategic asset. As a result, the company’s digital infrastructure is well positioned to handle the major growth and expansion the company has in its sights.