Availability ≠ Responsiveness
August 09, 2016

Robin Lyon
AppEnsure

Share this

How many of us IT professionals have been in a meeting similar to this: The chairs of various departments throughout the company are sitting around a long table and are giving a monthly summary.  IT presents that the applications, network and servers were some amount of 9’s available and may explain an outage. The meeting goes on and then one of the heads explains a failure to meet department goals by stating some application was "slow."


IT is asked about it but unfortunately can only present data upon number of tickets and general up time. The slow comment is then picked up another department and IT is left in the untenable position of defending its metrics and supposedly achieved goals while other departments are blaming IT for lack of productivity. 

The real problem is one of communication of expectations. IT has data that supports availability but the customer is complaining of slowness. Slowness is a subjective term and for IT to resolve the difficulty different metrics and SLAs are needed. Fortunately, there is a perfectly good way to measure slowness – time. When we think of availability we need to understand we are actually speaking of capacity while the users are interested in throughput. 

By measuring transaction time (the amount of time it takes for the user to commit an action and receive the corresponding data from the program they are using) IT can state how fast an application is working in objective terms. SLAs can be established that some percentage of the transactions during a reporting period will be completed within a certain amount of time. This allows business decisions based upon performance and is a salve for the mysterious "slow" comment.

Availability is one of the early metrics IT has used to create a simple number to represent complex systems. 

Robin Lyon is Director of Analytics at AppEnsure.

Share this

The Latest

June 26, 2017

Many organizations are struggling to resolve customer-impacting incidents quickly enough to preserve brand loyalty and revenue, according to PagerDuty's recent State of Digital Operations Report ...

June 23, 2017

"Become the Automator, Not the Automated." While it's a simple enough phrase, it speaks directly to how today's organizations and IT teams must innovate to remain competitive. A critical aspect of innovation is acknowledging the digital transformation of businesses. The move to digitalization enables organizations to more effectively unlock the power of information technology (IT) to fuel and accelerate business innovation. It is a competitive weapon and a survival imperative ...

June 22, 2017

Executives in the US and Europe now place broad trust in Artificial Intelligence (AI) and machine learning systems, designed to protect organizations from more dynamic pernicious cyber threats, according to Radware's 2017 Executive Application & Network Security Survey ....

June 21, 2017

While IT service management (ITSM) has too often been viewed by the industry as an area of reactive management with fading process efficiencies and legacy concerns, a new study by Enterprise Management Associates (EMA) reveals that, in many organizations, ITSM is becoming a hub of innovation ...

June 20, 2017

Cloud is quickly becoming the new normal. The challenge for organizations is that increased cloud usage means increased complexity, often leading to a kind of infrastructure "blind spot." So how do companies break the blind spot and get back on track? ...

June 19, 2017

Hybrid IT is becoming a standard enterprise model, but there’s no single playbook to get there, according to a new report by Dimension Data entitled The Success Factors for Managing Hybrid IT ...

June 16, 2017

Any mobile app developer will tell you that one of the greatest challenges in monetizing their apps through video ads isn't finding the right demand or knowing when to run the videos; it's figuring out how to present video ads without slowing down their apps ...

June 15, 2017

40 percent of UK retail websites experience downtime during seasonal peaks, according to a recent study by Cogeco Peer 1 ...

June 14, 2017

Predictive analytics is a popular ITOA technology that you can leverage to improve your business by leaps and bounds. Predictive analytics analyzes relationships among various data points to predict behavioral trends, growth opportunities and risks, which can add critical value to your business. Here are a few questions to help you decide if predictive analytics is right for your business ...

June 13, 2017

Many organizations are at a tipping point, as new technology demands are set to outstrip the skills supply, according to a new Global Digital Transformation Skills Study by Brocade ...