Why is low visibility a problem?

What visibility do you have into your IT environments? When a user calls up your IT team with an issue logging into their remote desktop, can you quickly tell if it’s your network, application server, database server, or storage causing them pain? Can you easily pinpoint your infrastructure bottlenecks which are impacting tens, hundreds, or thousands of your people?

We’ve seen the issues first hand; heard the complaints. A user calls the IT team: “Citrix is slow”; “The intranet is slow”; “I can’t log in”. A game of “ticket tag” begins – the service desk logs the issue and passes it to the infrastructure team, who check the servers and don’t find any issue. So the ticket is passed to the network team, then onto the storage team. Every team examines the issue within their own framework before someone finally calls the user back, only to hear “It’s fine now!” and close the ticket.

Why is this happening? Low visibility.

What impact does low visibility have on your business?

From the IT team to the end user to the bottom line, not having a holistic view over all of your infrastructure impacts every part of your business.

  • Wasted time – the time your IT team spends methodically checking each piece of the company infrastructure in response to reported issues could be better spent, and the bigger the IT team, the bigger the issue.
  • Lost productivity – it’s not just the IT team affected. When there’s no visibility over what’s causing issues, users get hugely frustrated as they deal with slow logins, slow applications, app errors, and crashes. We know that users eventually develop apathy towards these issues: “That’s just normal, my login always takes 10 minutes”. Many even stop logging incidents with the service desk!
  • Low reactivity – Instead of looking ahead and solving issues before they become big problems, IT can only respond to events after they occur and after they’ve been notified by a user.
  • Bottom line – the lost productivity due to bad user experience, combined with the time wasted by IT staff troubleshooting, has a significant impact on the bottom line.

CIOs we speak to don’t want their team just “keeping the lights on”. That’s part of the driver to move to Cloud/IaaS/PaaS/SaaS: less maintenance, patching, upgrading, and troubleshooting. Instead, we hear that CIOs want their team to be focused on making their business more productive and more successful through technology. Unfortunately, low visibility is preventing that.

Why hasn’t this issue been solved?

So many providers in the market have products that are relatively good at providing visibility into their own piece of technology. The problem is that you end up with silos of knowledge and visibility. The desktop team, network team, Citrix team, storage team, virtualisation team – each has their own way of looking at their piece, but no-one has a holistic view. Each team might spend anywhere from 10 minutes to an hour looking for a solution – yet if they had end-to-end visibility they could quickly identify issues.

Holistic visibility tools exist – so why aren’t organisations using them?

Despite the prevalence of product-specific tools, there are options out there that provide an end-to-end view. Yet organisations still aren’t implementing them. Unsurprisingly, the biggest barriers seem to be:

  • Cost – people still see monitoring as an expense; loss of productivity and bad user experience are hard to quantify, so making an investment in a monitoring product to give them visibility doesn’t always show obvious ROI.
  • Effort – most of the options out there can’t just be turned on with the flick of a switch and left to run themselves; they need an expert to get the most out of them.

It comes down to ease of use. We’ve seen many organisations put in all-encompassing visibility and monitoring solutions, only to get so many alerts out of them that they end up not paying much attention to them. The fact is, unless there’s someone who’s willing to nurture it, and tweak it, they’re not going to get much out of it.

Visibility is one of the biggest issues facing end user computing today – but it doesn’t need to be. Over the next few posts, we’ll be looking at the options out there – and how you can better gain an end-to-end view over your business. In the meantime, if you want to talk about getting visibility back in your business, just get in touch.

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Contact Deptive

Location
Plaza Level (Regus)
41 Shortland Street
Auckland
We also have a virtual office in Wellington.

Contact Details
info@deptive.co.nz
0800 000 141

Postal Address
PO Box 34797,
Birkenhead, Auckland 0746