Tag Archive | "Business Service Management"

Seven Ways to Bust Your IT Budget – Baseline

Tags: Business Service Management, Cloud, IT Management, ROI, SaaS, Transformation

The Hub Commentary_

I agree that costs need to be managed, however, there comes a point of no return.  Justifying the business value and return on investment is the shift IT organizations need to make in order to be competitive with the cloud and SaaS providers.

There needs to be focus on cost cutting where possible, however, there needs to be more focus on the delivery of value and growing the business with technology.  It is great to spend on technology when you can illustrate gains in revenue through the use of technology whether it be customer retention and quality of service or a differentiating service in the market.

Are you merely counting pennies or spending to gain?



Companies overspent by more than $207 billion on technology and telecom purchases last year, according to NPI, a consulting firm specializing in the management of IT spending. Many enterprises were dealing with budgets that had been slashed during the Great Recession, even as new projects were expected to drive the innovation necessary for growth.  (Read Full Article…)

Google Analytics Gives You Access to Valuable Web Data

Tags: Analytics, Business Service Management, IT Management, Service Level

No discussion of analytics is complete without discussing Google Analytics, the free analytics tool from Google. It can provide your company with a wealth of valuable data about your web site’s visitors. You simply add some code to your web site, and Google begins analyzing the traffic for you. 

Each time someone visits your web site, Google records all kinds of information including the source of the traffic (e.g., direct or Google search), the browser, operating system, country and more. You can learn which content is most popular and how long visitors stay on your page (called the bounce rate).

What’s more you can set up experiments to see which content or design attracts more visitors and advanced metrics that meet the needs of your individual sites. This is highly sophisticated and deeply layered –not your typical basic information that you would expect with a free tool

Google Analytics is a must-have for every web site administrator because it lets you understand at a very granular level the behavior of your web site visitors. While there is probably a trade-off for this as Google is using this aggregated data for its own needs, for many companies the trade-off is worth it because of the amount of information you can gather and make use of.

As we’ve shown throughout this series on analytics, they are a fascinating part of monitoring the activity inside your organization, and while analyzing web site data is different in many ways from the types of information you get from business service monitoring, it still provides a treasure trove of useful information to help you understand your customers better and how to improve your company’s web site.

We hope this series has given you at least some understanding of this type of monitoring and how you can make use of it in your organization.

Please see the other posts in this series including:


Why Projects Fail and How to Rescue Them – Baseline

Tags: Baseline, Best Practices, Business Alignment, Business Service Management, IT, IT Management

The Hub Commentary

Unclear requirements, ambiguous priorities, lack of resources and unrealistic timelines are all notable reasons for failed projects.   But these are only a few…check out other obstacles that cause many projects to crash and burn and the strategies to recover those failed projects.


Failed projects are costly, so a sound project recovery strategy can pay off handsomely. A new study from project management firm PM Solutions, “Strategies for Project Recovery,” says the average American company manages $200 million in projects each year, with perhaps one-third of those, or $74 million worth, at risk of failing. But action strategies can salvage faltering projects about 75% of the time.  Read more…

VDI’s Impact on Network Infrastructure – ITBusinessEdge

Tags: Business Service Management, End-to-End View, IT Management Tools, Monitoring, VDI

The Hub Commentary_

Virtualized Desktop Infrastructures (VDI) can save organizations on the hardware with the thin client, but as Arthur points out there are additional costs to consider and with everything there is a break-even and savings point with volume.  We are back to the dumb terminal!  What is old is new again.

I do agree that there is a cost on the network and network bandwidth has to be planned for accordingly, much like video conferencing that gets left on long after a meeting and when we all received our first desktop and connected to a news download site as a screen saver.  Doh!

I’ll also mention that there are support savings to be gained as well in having such a standard end point to manage and service, however, the support organization will require an end-to-end management view of the infrastructure in order to be able to monitor incidents.  This requires the integration platform that brings all of the infrastructure together for a complete view as a service in order to pinpoint whether it is network, VM, the application, the hardware, etc.

I do believe the hardware savings is the small piece of the ROI when implemented correctly.  The support costs with the right tools to view the end-to-end performance will be the greatest savings to the organization.

How are you planning for your VDI implementation?



It’s been clear for some time that the initial rosy ROI projections surrounding Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI) didn’t exactly tell the whole story.  (Read Full Article…)

Are Enterprises Really Gaga for the Cloud?

Tags: BSM, Business Service Management, Cloud, Enterprise IT, Private Cloud

So many statistics out there about when we’ll adopt the cloud. Some may suggest that it’s years away, that by 2013 only small bits will be there. Others say, that many organizations are there today. What are you to believe?

For the sake of argument, lets separate public cloud services like Google Docs and Salesforce.com and stick to the idea of private cloud — that is, the idea of building a set of services not unlike the public cloud, inside the firewall. Think of a portal of services you’ve built out on virtual machines providing you and your users with fixed costs and resource flexibility.

It sounds wonderful and there is a lot of upside to building a private cloud, but like anything else, there is expense involved. There is at least a couple of layers of technology you need to lay on top of these services offering (not the least of which should be business service management, ahem).

That’s why I was surprised to read a list of IDC predictions for 2011 — we are talking this year, not some nebulous point way off in the future — that the private cloud would mature in 2011. To be precise, IDC predicted that “Private Cloud Plans Will Mature, Dominate the Enterprise Infrastructure Software Agenda in 2011.”

That’s a pretty bold statement when you consider that a lot of companies still don’t understand the difference between the public and private cloud yet. Many remain wary of it for a number of reasons and it would require a significant change in direction for many IT departments.

Do I think companies are discussing it? I definitely think many CIOs are having conversations with their staffs about building private clouds, but change happens slowly in most IT departments.

In spite of the rapid pace of technological change going on all around us, I think it’s a bit unrealistic to think that what is basically a new technology will mature and dominate. Perhaps discussion will begin and maybe even some sand boxing. Perhaps companies will put forth a plan of attack, but to expect it to mature and dominate as IDC predicted is highly unrealistic to me and is counter to the way I’ve learned IT departments move, operate and absorb change.

Photo by gareth1953 on Flickr. Used under Creative Commons License.

4 Companies that Get IT – 1 Purpose — Attachmate

Tags: Attachmate, Business Service Management, NetIQ, Novell

The Hub Commentary_

The day has finally arrived to announce the closing of one chapter and the start of another.  As my loyal followers know, we did belong to Novell, but we have remained true to keeping this site focused on best practices, insight, opinion and resources and not on the vendor technology specifically.  Today I will go ahead and post this news as it is significant in the enterprise software market in general.

Those of us here are thrilled that the wait is over and are even more thrilled that what was once Data Center solutions (less SUSE Linux) will become part of NetIQ.  We very much look forward to strength that the Security, NetIQ, PlateSpin, Cloud Manager, Operations Center, etc. solutions will bring to the market as a whole creating new options in what is a somewhat mature market.

Novell Operations Center 5.0 was due to announce and launch with a big splash yesterday, however, there was bigger news on the horizon.  So many faithful followers must be scratching their heads as to why Michele and her BSM Jedi counterpart, Tobin, merely dropped two simple blogs on Novell for the Novell Operations Center 5.0 release.  Today you understand.  We’ll post additional content and press in the coming weeks, have no fear.

We are very excited about the release and look forward to sharing with the market in a bigger way in the coming weeks what is new.  We are also thrilled that the release comes comes at a great time as the simplification of the solution enables us all under the NetIQ umbrella to hit the ground at full stride.

Check out our Cool Solutions blog on Novell.com to get a glimpse into the product release and we will have much more to come in the coming weeks as part of this bigger, very exciting announcement!  We know business service management initiatives have become more of an imperative in aligning to the business and the complex infrastructure that agile technology has brought to bear on many IT organizations and we look forward to the next chapter of Operations Center!



The Attachmate Group Completes Acquisition of Novell

HOUSTON – April 27, 2011 – The Attachmate Group today announced the completion of the acquisition of Novell, Inc., a leader in intelligent workload management, under the terms of the definitive agreement disclosed on November 22, 2010. Novell will now operate as two separate business units under the Novell® and SUSE® brand names and join Attachmate® and NetIQ® as holdings of The Attachmate Group.  (Read Full Article…)

2011 Outsourcing Survey: Chasing Fast And Cheap – InformationWeek

Tags: Business Service Management, IT Management, Monitoring, Performance, Service Value, Sourcing, Transformation

The Hub Commentary_

The final quote sums this up, “You cannot outsource responsibility”.  IT still owns the delivery of service.  In my many years as an analyst and consultant, you never ever outsource for cost saving.  Unless you are a hideously inefficient organization, it is never cheaper.  You must factor in 3-7% of the contract value as vendor management expenses and the provider must also make a profit.

Now you can drive costs out by accepting standards the provider brings to the table and as the article states, free your valuable resources for strategic work versus the commodity.  Deployment options must be weighed based upon the commodity – strategic nature of the service and in-house expertise.  In some cases as the article states, you may go outside to learn a new skill for a strategic service.  However, just because you have a bunch of folks that can do a commodity task doesn’t mean it is well suited for your in-house staff.

I disagree with the survey results regarding unforseen costs and poor quality.  This all points to vendor management.  IT still retains responsibility and just because it is handed over to a provider doesn’t mean IT stops managing the service.  Project overruns and delivery sit squarely with the project manager or vendor management group in this situation.

The other complaint that I doesn’t hold water for me either is “they don’t know my industry”.   Unless you are contracting for an industry specific service/application, IT management is IT management across industries.  It’s the applications and services that are different from industry to industry and thus why it remains incumbent upon IT to take leadership in managing the service providers.

The reason more and more of IT will be outsourced is because the service providers are going to the business, selling the business a service for a specific cost and value and they are making the buying options very appealing.  The downside to this is that vendor management is being overlooked.   As I’ve mentioned previously, IT owns the service and to stay out of perception versus reality debates regarding a service, IT must also monitor the service and build this into their vendor management practice.

There is no doubt the cloud and outsourcing options are here to stay and will continue to eat away at the data center.  Those that deploy, monitor, manage, and measure their services in mixed environments taking advantage of the best options will lead their industry with technology in the coming year.

How are you monitoring and measuring your service providers?



Even as the economy improves, the reality of IT service delivery is less positive: We’re not willing to fight to hire talent, opting instead to outsource more and more, yet not investing in vital management tools and skills.  (Read Full Article…)

VMware Launches Cloud Foundry

Tags: BSM, Business Service Management, Cloud, Monitoring, PaaS, Virtualization, VMware

Business Service Management Commentary on IT Service Management, Service Level Management & Performance ManagementVMware announced that it is launching Cloud Foundry, a move that will put the company smack dab in the center of the Platform as a Service (PaaS) market. The project is in Beta for now.

As I wrote in Understanding the Different Levels of Cloud Computing, PaaS “…provides a platform on which you can build applications usually linked to a particular vendor.” VMware is traditionally known as a company that provides the software to build out virtual machines, a key component in building and deploying private clouds, so this takes them in a new direction.

Geva Perry, writing on his Thinking Out Cloud blog, says what’s interesting about this offering is that it offers a series of VMware branded services such as data and messaging services, but also uses an open architecture that enables enterprises to link other non-VMware services. This is in contrast to Salesforce.com, whose PaaS offering is really designed to lock you into the Salesforce platform (which is fine if that’s where you’re working, not everyone is about customer relationship management).

This is an intriguing offering for any IT pro because it provides a central place where you can build your cloud infrastructure with a mix of public and private services. Now what’s really interesting here is the open nature of this platform. If it’s truly open, and depending on how flexible the API is, perhaps you could also connect the whole kit and kaboodle to your monitoring tool. Imagine how that would be?

I’m not certain this is possible having just seen the picture of the architecture in the blog post, but if it were, it opens up some interesting possibilities as it would allow you to have the means to monitor your entire system from a single view, a pretty attractive idea.

If it’s not that easy to connect to an external monitoring system, it should be because this type of connectivity has to become a priority. IT pros need to have the tools to monitor the whole system wherever it resides and a tool like this that mixes services should provide that.

Photo by jenny-bee on Flickr. Used under Creative Commons License.

Amazon EC2 debacle drags on into Day 2 – NetworkWorld

Tags: Amazon EC2, Business Service Management, Cloud, DR, Service Providers

The Hub Commentary_

The news continued through the weekend on the Amazon outage this past week.  While many who are commenting are using it as an opportunity to point the finger that the cloud has failed.  I do not.  The cloud is here to stay.

The role of the IT organization is changing to that of the service provider managing the services delivered to the business.  Just because a public cloud becomes the deployment option of choice does not let IT off the hook for responsibility of the service.  Think about it as your car and taking it in for service.  Just because Ford, GM, etc. didn’t ship a part doesn’t make you any less happy when the dealer says, “I didn’t get the part from the manufacturer”.  Did you take your car to the dealer or the manufacturer?

Agile and dynamic infrastructures are here to stay.  Those that embrace them and take advantage of them early, will lead their industries.  As one article stated that one of those affected said, “we wouldn’t be as far along without Amazon”.  What this boils down to is what often lags with new technology – management.

I wrote a previous article on defining service value and then define deployment options, service levels, back-up and recovery.  The natural market reaction will be to impose stringent service level requirements on the service providers, I’m here to tell you that you will pay for doing that.  Define the appropriate service level for the criticality of the service.  Then I suggest planning for the contingency of a major outage, don’t pay for the risk of the catastrophic every day for something that may happen once, never, etc.   Have a back-up plan.

What is your back-up plan?



Despite restoring service for many customers, Amazon’s troubles with its Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2) and Relational Database Service continue this morning, meaning that debate over the wisdom of relying on such cloud services is certain to grow louder.  (Read Full Article…)

Outages, Monitoring and Being Prepared

Tags: Amazon EC2, Business Service Management, Cloud Computing, Disasters, Enterprise IT, Outages

Last week, Lori MacVittie had a blog post on DevCentral about earning your data center merit badge. The message was delivered up front and it was simple to understand: Be prepared. MacVittie is right of course, the best way to stay out of trouble is to put systems in place to prevent it from happening in the first place.

But today’s outage at Amazon EC2 showed us something else — that no matter how well prepared you are, stuff happens that’s totally out of your control and it can spiral out of your control pretty quickly. Lest you think just because you don’t use public Cloud Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) like Amazon EC2 and hence have nothing to worry about, think again.

If it can happen to Amazon, it can happen to you because at its heart what is Amazon but a giant data center, whose core business is keeping other businesses going. That would suggest that Thursday’s outage was something extraordinary to bypass all of the fail-safes that a system like Amazon has to have in place to keep things going. Today it all fell apart, and it could just as easily happen to you because chances are, your data center doesn’t have nearly the number of contingencies in place that Amazon has.

That means that ultimately you’re probably closer to a disaster like yesterday morning than Amazon ever was (yet it happened anyway).

All of this is not to scare you because IT pros know the score about these things, but it is to remind you that having systems in place to monitor and alert you *before* that disaster strikes is more important than ever. Now, it may end up that it doesn’t matter how prepared you are if a disaster strikes that’s completely beyond the scope of anything you could possibly have imagined in a reasonable contingency plan.

All you can do is follow MacVittie’s simple advice and be prepared for whatever comes. It might not always be enough, but if you do your best, you’ll minimize those major outages and be ready to deal with them when they do happen. But remember disasters happen to everyone at some point, whether your in the cloud or in-house in a data center, and you need to be ready.

Photo by rbrwr on Flickr. Used under Creative Commons License.

Amazon cloud outage derails Reddit, Quora – CNet & NetworkWorld

Tags: Amazon EC2, Business Service Management, Cloud Computing Journal, DR, IT Management, Service Value

The Hub Commentary_

Outages always make for big headlines and make for good examples of the cost of visibility and management.  I read these articles with positive thoughts and still see cloud computing as the future and those who are bold took advantage of growing business earlier rather than later.

As noted in the first article, some of these organizations would not be where they are today with their business if they had not leveraged new deployment options as fast as they did.  In a previous post, I discussed mapping your services based upon business value and cost and how to manage those services and selecting deployment options.  It’s a balancing act of how bold and how much of a risk you take to grow your business with cutting edge technology.  The balance to strike is how much you spend to have a DR or back-up plan for an event like this as you know they will happen.

Outages will occur and this shouldn’t push folks to write unwieldy service level agreements as you pay for those by pushing the risk back to the provider.  I would suggest that spend would be more wisely spent on a back-up provider to account for hiccups in a cost effective manner.

My hat still goes off to those embracing the cloud and growing their business as a result with agile technologies and there are learnings to plan for moving forward.

How are using agile technologies?



CNET Article

A partial failure at Amazon Web Services’ cloud-computing infrastructure brought down some Internet operations today, including the Web sites of Quora and Reddit.  (Read Full Article…)

NetworkWorld Article

Amazon reports this morning that it is making progress in restoring full service to customers of its Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2) and Relational Database Service in the eastern portion of the country after a rocky stretch of trouble that began sometime before midnight.   (Read Full Article…)

It’s the Agility, Stupid! – Novell

Tags: Business Alignment, Business Service Management, Cloud, Innovation, Novell, Service Providers, Service Value, Transformation

The Hub Commentary_

I’ve commented in this similar vein on many posts this year and the cost calculation and business value is covered in my post and recorded presentation here on The Hub.  My friend Michael sums up this topic well with citations from InformationWeek and Forrester. It is not about the technology, it is about the service value the technology brings to the business, something those in the business service management practice have known for many years.

So what makes it different now and why is it so prevalent in the news?  That’s an easy answer, Competition ala service providers.  Today in fact I discussed just this topic with a global audience and why competition will be the catalyst for change or outsourcing this time.  Service providers are going direct to the business to sell their services.  They speak exactly the language the business wants to hear, make it simple to buy and this will push IT organizations to adopt a business service management practice or get outsourced.

I like the notion of a Chief Acceleration Officer.  I enjoy times and situations like this where there is a challenge to solve for and the requirement for change where I know most IT organizations are change averse.  IT has been in this cycle of 80% + spent on just keeping the lights on for more than 20 years.  This equates to 1-2% of revenue annually just running the operations and thus very little is expended to grow the top line.  This is crazy when technology should be driving business innovation and growth.

I challenge you to pick up this years Fortune 500 magazine and then pick up next years and see who takes over leading their industry and that will tell you who embraced technology to drive growth and create efficiencies within IT to shift that 80/20 pie to something more like 60/40.  I wholeheartedly agree with my friend Michael, it’s about the agility and business value that a technology brings an organization.  Efficiencies are good, but should not be the only focus.

How are you driving service value and agility to be the change in your organization?



With the promise of cloud computing splashed across every headline today, it’s easy to lose track of where its greatest opportunities lie. Yes, saving money is important. It can help nudge the dreaded 80/20 maintenance-to-innovation ratio in the right direction. But when you’re thinking about the cloud, don’t stop there. It’s agility that can drive business growth and innovation, turning IT leaders into heroes.  (Read Full Article…)

My First 48 Hours with iPad 2: One CIO’s Story – CIO

Tags: Business Service Management, CIO, iPad, Service Value

The Hub Commentary_

As the iPad2 came to market and there were many articles regarding the use of employees bringing their own devices to the work environment saving capex spending.  My challenge with this is the hidden cost of support and security of data.  Just because the employee can bring a device in does not mean it should come in and be supported without a business reason.

I was seeking a genuine business reason that these devices become a business value add, justifying a new deployment option.  As I started to read this article it sounded more personal preference and that this CIO still had a secondary device too.  Just as I arrived at the end of the article there were a couple of great examples for use.

The medical field and the sharing of a simple device with access to patient information with the ability to access personal calendars and email that is portable for the shifts of the medical staff.  Now add file sharing and synchronization services where the data is backed-up elsewhere and accessible by many from many devices and I’m on board with true business value changing the way business is conducted improving patient care and creating efficiencies for the staff.

How are you using new devices for value and efficiency for a good business service management practice?



One CIO who has already made the iPad a critical part of his organization shares what he liked – and still wished for – after his first couple of days with the iPad 2. Read on for his take on FaceTime, Apple’s not-so “smart” cover, and more.  (Read Full Article…)

Where BTM Meets BSM

Tags: BSM, BTM, Business Service Management, Enterprise IT, SLA

Business Service Management Commentary on IT Service Management, Service Level Management & Performance ManagementFor businesses, it’s always hard to get all the possible value out of the different systems that help keep a company operating. One way you can begin to see that value is at the intersection of BTM and BSM. B what? I hear you saying.

Let’s back up and explain the terms. BTM stands for Business Transaction Management. As Sean Larner wrote on the L’abre Solutions blog, “Business transactions are the simple and complex entities that produce business outcomes.” Therefore, Business Transaction Management is the act of managing those transactions. This is not to be confused with Business Process Management (BPM), which lets you set up complex business work flows to automate the act of moving work through the enterprise to completion.

Where this gets interesting is when BTM crosses paths with BSM, which of course stands for Business Service Management, the very subject of this blog. One thing we cover in great detail on this blog is how to deal with service level agreements (SLAs). In his post Reaching SLA Nirvana, Lee Frazier offers 8 ways to reach that elusive goal of controlling your SLAs.

Finding a coherent set of tools is a big part of that, and as Larner points out in his post “utilising BTM it is now possible to define and measure, success/failure (state) and time based business SLAs…” Larner goes on to define a set of vertical tasks that could be measured in this manner including investment banking trade lifecycles and  retail transaction flows.

The beauty of this type of measurement is that you can link it to your BSM strategy and find real business value that can help you better understand your business. BTM might not be something that you’re acutely aware of, but by having it in place, it can work with your BSM system and provide you with a deeper understanding of your business at an extremely detailed level.

Photo by Joshua Rappeneker on Flickr. Used under Creative Commons License.

Transparency In The Cloud, Part III: 2 More Questions to Ask Every SaaS Provider – SaaSBlogs

Tags: Business Service Management, SaaS, Service Providers

The Hub Commentary_

Flexible pricing and flexible services (or features), both great questions to explore as Matt describes.  However, the reason some software and services are more suitable in an as-a-Service model is because it is standard.  The pricing is cheaper due to economies of scale created by sharing the same service with many.

The more one off it needs to become, the less suitable it is for an as-a-Service model.  Highly custom engagements are really more in line with standard outsourcing services.  I highly encourage organizations to embrace the SaaS model and adopt the standard services as lower cost options and put the cost saving toward their value add services to grow their businesses as I wrote in a previous post defining services for value.

I do not disagree with the author, the questions are worthy to explore to understand what is configurable in terms of the service and pricing, however, realize there is a difference between configuring and customizing.  Customizing comes at a high cost, just as it does in software to service and support it as a non-standard.

Do you configure or customize your cloud services?



Continuing on the theme of Parts I and II, this article provides two more questions that all consumers of B2B SaaS should ask their providers.  While the questions in Part II were centered around providers’ ability to maintain speedy and reliable service, the remaining questions focus on their ability to be flexible in pricing and customization of their offering.  (Read Full Article…)

Organizing IT for Excellent Service – Baseline

Tags: BSM, Business Alignment, Business Service Management, Cost Reduction, IT Management, IT Management Tools, Service Level, Service Value

The Hub Commentary

If you want to avoid IT silos and provide more value and transparency back to the business this is a worthwhile read.


Building IT around the business services it provides, rather than around assets or activities, pays off.   Learn more about the direct benefits…

Reducing Complexity in the Enterprise

Tags: Business Service Management, Cloud Computing, Enterprise IT, Microsoft, VMware

Business Service Management Commentary on IT Service Management, Service Level Management & Performance ManagementBusiness Service Management Commentary on IT Service Management, Service Level Management & Performance ManagementWhile attending the CeBIT technology trade fair in Hannover, Germany, I saw a presentation by Paul Strong, CTO at VMware for Europe, Middle East and Africa, where he spoke about the relationship between cloud services and IT.  One thing he said really struck me: “When you pull apart software, you’re pulling out business processes.”

It’s a notion that really makes sense, but he took it even further. He said that 80-85 percent of your business costs are related to software. If I had been asked that before seeing this presentation, I think I would have said hardware was more costly, but Strong pointed out that this is because it’s very difficult for most enterprises to achieve the kinds of economies of scale to bring cost down. What’s more, he said that complexity drives cost.

That brings to mind the Dawn of a New Day farewell email that Ray Ozzie sent to Microsoft employees to announce his departure last fall in which he said, “complexity kills.” Specifically he said:

Complexity sucks the life out of users, developers and IT.  Complexity makes products difficult to plan, build, test and use.  Complexity introduces security challenges.  Complexity causes administrator frustration. And as time goes on and as software products mature – even with the best of intent – complexity is inescapable.

Software complexity is not only bad from a design standpoint, it also has a profound impact on IT and how they deal with patch management and upgrades and the myriad of problems and challenges associated with maintaining software in the enterprise.

That’s why Strong says moving non-critical processes to the cloud makes so much sense because cloud software vendors remove a lot of the complexity associated with enterprise software maintenance. They reduce the processes to a smaller, more manageable number of patterns, and they deal with upgrades and server maintenance for you.

From  your perspective, it changes the role of IT. As Strong said, it enables IT to return to its core purpose to map technology to business needs and to make smarter choices. Your job is no longer babysitting the software, but watching the entire system and making sure those systems work as they should and meet the needs of your organization.

Photo by Jimmie, Jackie, Tom and Asha on Flickr. Used under the Creative Commons License.

The Cloud Outscales, But Does It Outperform? – ITBusinessEdge

Tags: Business Service Management, Cloud, DR, Performance, Service Level, Service Providers, Storage

The Hub Commentary_

I would agree network performance is an aspect to consider when setting up and considering deployment options for mass storage.  Another aspect to consider is something I covered in another post on Categorizing your Serivces and which services, inclusive of data, should be put out in the cloud.

In all sourcing situations you need to consider:  security, performance, responsiveness to recovery, and management of the vendor.  A good rule of thumb estimate in managing the provider is 3-7% of the value of the contract.  This is an often overlooked cost in these short sided decisions to reduce costs short term by removing hardware, management and staff potentially.

Storage is well suited for cloud services, however, the service it supports and the criticality to the business is a high consideration.  Commodity data and services are easily the first to be considered for external service providers.  However the more mission critical and data sensitive it becomes to the organization, the more cost prohibitive it becomes to source the service.

Yes, performance is a key to consider, however, I still surmise that the service criticality to the business must also be in the decision process.

How do you decide how to right source your IT services?



We all know that the cloud can provide cheaper storage than in-house infrastructure, but is it better?

Of course, there are numerous ways to quantify “better,” but from an operations standpoint, it wouldn’t hurt to know exactly what you’re getting and what you’re giving up when you sign on the dotted line. (Read Full Article…)

Evolving towards a Business Assurance Center – Doug McClure

Tags: Business Alignment, Business Service Management, IT Management, Service Value, Transformation

The Hub Commentary_

It is time for IT to evolve and bring together the right information from the right sources for creating the right actions for management and service performance communication within the business.

Nice article and no doubt nice presentation by Doug.



As technology changes rapidly around us and as more and more companies begin to adopt smarter, dynamic infrastructure, services and applications to support the goals, objectives and expected outcomes of the business, technology and business operations and support organizations must also evolve to support these changes.  (Read Full Article…)

The Essential Metrics For Infrastructure And Operations – Forrester

Tags: Business Alignment, Business Service Management, Forrester, IT Management, Measuring, Metrics, Performance

The Hub Commentary_

I tend to agree with Rachel, there is no secret set of standard metrics.  There are methods and classifications for services, but no one size fits all.  I will also add that measurements drive behavior as well and that I would offer caution in over measuring.

For instance, if the service desk gets measured for number of tickets completed, they tend to cherry pick and submit every conversation to garner more points.  Counting time for application groups turns each non-developing task into something that requires planning.  All of this again leads to measuring IT and technology rather than the services driving the business.

As we’ve discussed in many articles and as Rachel too points out, it’s more about the value, action and method of measuring services and performance than technology metrics.

How are you measuring your IT – technology or services?



ne thing that I’ve found in common across infrastructure and operations groups of all shapes and sizes is that they are continually searching for the ideal set of key performance indicators. A set of metrics that perfectly measures their infrastructure, demonstrates the excellence of their operations, but are still simple and cheap to collect.  (Read Full Article…)