Managed IT Should Be a One-Size-Fits-All-Industries Service

    March 16, 2016

    By John Miecielica

    While there are many industry-specific IT management tools, IT has little to gain by further compartmentalizing solutions. Given the intersectionality of global business, managed IT needs to work smoothly across industry lines.

    In the IT industry, the only thing that outnumbers the countless problems you encounter in any given day’s work is the amount of potential solutions to them. Just as IT professionals called for standardization in areas like coding language and USB ports, they’re now voicing the need for universal managed IT and service optimization tools.

    Of course, there are many software tools that are specific to particular industries. But given the rapid fragmentation of the general IT market (and of companies themselves), there’s an obvious and growing dearth of one-size-fits-all-industries managed IT service.

    Companies who are unable to gain detailed snapshots across their entire IT suite are unable to manage their capacity effectively. Disparate IT-supported verticals, such as billing and accounting, database management, and procurement, are each supported by discrete applications that run on varying server types.

    To continually meet and exceed SLAs without incurring serious costs, businesses need managed IT to reach across technical borders with ease.

    These are real-world applications. To demonstrate, here are porthole views into how global players from disparate industries have used the same universal managed IT service to keep their capacity issues in line.

    Telecommunications Bottleneck

    Several years ago, a leading global telecommunications provider began suffering mysterious slowdowns on a critical customer-facing service. With no real insight into their multi-tiered Oracle/SunFire architecture usage, they had historically adopted a “Buy More Hardware” philosophy, over-engineering to minimize the risk of downtime.

    Acquiring TeamQuest software on a recommendation, the manager was soon able to pinpoint the location of a severe I/O bottleneck. After making simple disc allocation improvements, the company has used the software for practically everything: from predicting usage spikes from roaming cell devices during the Beijing Olympics, to creating growth and hardware obsolescence and acquisition models.

    Today, the company’s IT manager knows that “Corporate finance won’t sign off on a hardware acquisition without a TeamQuest analysis model.”

    VocaLink Mitigates Transaction Risk

    VocaLink, one of the largest payment systems companies in the world, used to have very little visibility into their IT processing resources and their functionality, despite processing over 77 million payments daily, the bulk of salaries, bills, and government benefits in the UK.

    This could have come to a volatile head — an instance of their Oracle database suddenly and unexpectedly stopped, and if it weren’t for TeamQuest software that immediately alerted their performance analysts, thousands of customers would have been affected.

    With no other recourse by which to dive deep into their systems, VocaLink would have had no way to rapidly address and resolve the issue.

    Linking Non-Profits to Volunteers and Donations

    A DC-based nonprofit struggled to allocate enough capacity to suit its 75,000 partner agencies and two million volunteers that use its services. Operating WebLogic servers and an Oracle database (running a mix of Red Hat, Solaris, Linux, and Windows), the organization lacked the budget to purchase traditional management software, but couldn’t comfortably roll out its planned eBay-based donation program.

    The administrator recalls, “We really needed an online monitoring tool that gave us alerts so we could immediately respond to any problems.” Using TeamQuest software to analyze metrics like CPU utilization, memory, I/O reads, and throughput, the non-profit found that they could feasibly implement the eBay service, reallocating enough capacity to make their current equipment last for another year.

    At a time when companies are developing highly complicated digital initiatives, management software will need to cope with the diversity of technical elements involved. But as we’ve shown, intuitive managed IT software can effectively grapple with a high variability of capacity issues, regardless of the industry involved (even without the most recent generation of products). Managed IT must be one-size-fits-all-industries, or else the pieces simply won’t fit together.

    (Main image credit: Ralph Aichinger/flickr)