How to Do Capacity Planning
by Per Bauer
Become an IT capacity planning expert today.
What is capacity planning?
Capacity planning is all about optimization – it’s about maximizing the business benefits of IT without overspending, balancing business productivity with IT costs. Any CIO or IT manager with a limited time, money, or personnel budget should be motivated to use capacity planning.
Here are just a few of the uses for capacity planning:
- Predicting when your infrastructure will no longer be able to meet service levels
- Determining which IT infrastructure elements will become future performance bottlenecks
- Calculating analytics to comparing private cloud vs. public cloud costs
- Preparing for future business workloads, whether forecasted or unexpected
- Predicting the most cost-effective production configuration before rolling out a new application
Do you know how to do capacity planning?
Probably not. Otherwise, you wouldn’t be here.
The truth is, most in-house IT capacity planning experts have retired. And the timing couldn’t be worse. Your IT infrastructure keeps getting more complex—and more difficult to manage. Capacity planning is the only way to stay on top of it.
So, you need to know how to do capacity planning now.
In this guide, you’ll learn about:
- Steps in capacity planning
- Capacity planning methods
- Capacity planning tools
Steps in Capacity Planning
Capacity planning is easier said than done. There are many ways to go about capacity planning, including using thresholds, linear trending, and capacity models. There are also automated predictive tools that can help, but it can be hard to know where to start.
But you can build up your capacity planning expertise if you follow the right steps.
Identify a Capacity Planning Champion
While having a dedicated capacity planner isn't always possible, you do need to put someone in charge to outline the strategy and drive the capacity planning initiative. Capacity planning requires involvement and assistance by other parts of the organization, not just IT. So, one key responsibility of the capacity planner or champion is to define and coordinate the work of the cross-functional capacity planning team.
Get Buy-In from the Business
Capacity planning isn’t just about IT. It’s about moving the business forward. And that’s why it’s important to get executive buy-in on your capacity planning initiatives.
Your executives know what’s coming down the line for the business. And they’ll be able to provide business forecasts so that you can determine how best to meet future capacity requirements.
Determine Your Requirements
In this step, you’ll need to ask and answer a lot of questions.
What kind of response time do you need to maintain? Do you have service level agreements (SLAs)? What kind of service do you need to provide to maintain those?
Analyze Your Resources
Once you’ve established your performance requirements, it’s time to get measurements from your servers and other IT infrastructure to evaluate your current capacity situation. Without this measurement data, you can’t analyze capacity.
Plan for Future Needs
Influence Your Audience
Unlock the last two steps in capacity planning and learn about different methods for capacity planning. Fill out the form at the top to download the guide today.