Why Advanced IT Analytics Deployments Show Benefits That Are Too Good To Miss
September 08, 2017

Dennis Drogseth
EMA

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In my previous blog, I shared why I felt that advanced IT analytics (AIA) is both an area of intense innovation, while at the same time a set of technologies that are truly coming of age. No longer just a technological curiosity, AIA solutions are already transforming many IT organizations for the better.

As I also mentioned in last week's column, for our AIA Buyer's Guide we interviewed more than 20 deployments to help us better assess vendor strengths and limitations. So given the abundance of riches to work with, I've decided to illustrate several of the more prominent AIA benefit categories with actual real-world comments.

Toolset Consolidation and Mean Time to Repair

These are probably the two most preeminent values we saw from the thirteen vendors we evaluated for our buyer's guide. And to be honest this is also what we expected. AIA solutions can deliver impressive value in breaking through siloed introversion, to promote more data sharing — with much enhanced proactive relevance. Moreover, AIA solutions generally do this by providing a common layer of insight that promotes toolset consolidation — either by replacing many redundant or unnecessary siloed tools, or by assimilating leading indicators so that toolsets of secondary value can be dispensed with.

Here are just a few of many quotes to illustrate this:

We are moving to replace all the point solutions in the environment with our AIA toolset. This has the added benefit of saving us money on licenses as we eliminate unneeded, overlapping tools.
Technology company supporting federal health services

We estimate that we will save about $500,000 in toolset consolidation in monitoring. In terms of mean time to resolution (MTTR), we were averaging 2.5 hours per incident before. Now it's down to 38 minutes — a time reduction approaching 500%.
Global digital services company

The move to AIA allowed us to unify our operations team with a single-pane-of-glass view and drill-down so that we could share information more effectively. In the past we caught only 3% of our problems proactively. That percentage went up to 88%. Mean time to repair dropped from hours to as low as 12 minutes, and we are now able to automate resolutions to known issues.
Global provider of Internet-based entertainment 

Unifying IT with Improved Levels of Efficiency

As a corollary to toolset consolidation and improved MTTR, AIA solutions also provide a common fabric for IT teams to work more effectively together. As I pointed out last week, this is not necessarily limited to operations — it can often include other parts of IT and business stakeholders, as well.

Our stakeholders overall are loving [the AIA solution] with dramatic reductions in mean time to repair. This includes our DevOps teams—who are able to consume the data at a quick pace and almost instantaneously make adjustments to the development process. In the future, we're hoping to get more support for SecOps, with more integrated insight across security and operations—as we continue to get more and more of our IT stakeholders engaged.
Large government agency in the Pacific Rim

We are enjoying accelerated levels of correlation, automation, and information integration. We are also able to support more projects and more business opportunities without increasing headcount. It is enabling us to prepare for reaching more effective ways of working as an organization in the future.
Large European telecommunications service provider 

Improved Business Awareness with Improved Business Outcomes

Not all AIA solutions are yet focused on business outcomes and business performance, but a growing number are. EMA believes this is a high growth opportunity for AIA overall, in better aligning IT with business needs and business values, and maximizing both IT and business performance.

With our AIA solution we were able to gain a complete understanding of how all our business transactions were performing at one level and map this to critical business milestones at another level so that we were able to fully correlate business performance with transactional outcomes and requirements for compliance.
Large North American financial services company 

Rather than just looking proactively at different data, which was itself of value, with our new solution we were able to take that up a level and relate what was happening to business outcomes and business objectives. That caught our attention. And it was good for our business because most CIOs we sell to are focused on business outcomes. 
North American managed services provider 

Capacity Insights and Capacity Optimization

This is an example of a more specialized area within the broader AIA arena—at least among the thirteen vendors we examined. While almost all had valuable data and insights that could be applied to capacity planning, fewer than half offered capabilities, either directly or through fully supported integrations, for in-depth capacity optimization, and in some cases even including cost-related concerns.

We are able to gather data like saturation rates on 100% of our virtual machines. The lack of visibility into these services had been a huge problem for us, but now we have not only data but actionable information for managing those critical services. And the list goes on.
US health services company

When we roll up the information into "this product engineering team is running compute resources at 30 percent utilization," then everybody understands how well their money is being spent. I like to say, "We are taking the IT-speak out of the boardroom." For us, CapEx spending on additional compute infrastructure has decreased 25 percent this year. We expect it to go down another 30-40 percent next year.
International shipping company

There are many other benefits to AIA, some of which are implied in the above comments. These range from significant values in assimilating both public and private cloud resources, and support for DevOps, for SecOps (integrated security and operations), and even for the Internet of Things (IoT).

For more insight into what's really going on with leading innovators in AIA, I invite you once again to listen in on September 21 to my webinar. And in the meantime, I welcome your comments and questions at drogseth@emausa.com.

Dennis Drogseth is VP at Enterprise Management Associates (EMA)
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