The Stages of IT Operations Analytics

IT Resilience & Downtime Prevention Blog

The Stages of IT Operations Analytics

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by Roy Goffer on March 25, 2015

As businesses rely more and more on IT, the ability to analyze and understand what is happening within their datacenters and IT operations has become crucial to their success. Constant IT changes make it almost impossible to manually monitor and control IT operations, so the role of analytics solutions is becoming ever more important.

IT Operations Analytics (ITOA) offer an effective approach for retrieving, reporting, and analyzing IT-related data, providing insight that can help you meet key objectives for your IT operations. ITOA solutions provide visibility into all aspects of your IT operations and deliver value on several different levels. But not all analytics solutions are alike. Let’s look at the three key stages in the evolution of IT Analytics.

Descriptive Analytics: What Happened

In a descriptive model, data on past events is analyzed in an attempt to correlate cause and effect. For example, it may point to loss of network capacity as a cause for degraded response time. Based on this analysis, measures can be taken to prevent future events.

Predictive Analytics: What is Going to Happen

Predictive analytics take the analysis one step forward, using past data to formulate a model of future behavior. As such, predictive analytics will forecast future outcomes and identify risks in the IT infrastructure. For example, it may point to a single-point-of-failure in the infrastructure and point to the potential impact of this risk under certain scenarios..

Prescriptive Analytics: What Actions to Take

This is the most advanced stage of IT Analytics. Based on the prediction of potential outcomes and an inference of the contributing risk factors, prescriptive analytics solutions can point to suggested corrective actions that will eliminate the risks and minimize the likelihood of service disruption.

The Value of Analytics for IT Operations

IT Operations Analytics solutions are employed to measure performance and reveal anomalies in IT systems. The impact of IT Operations Analytics on the bottom line is substantial. Adoption of ITOA solution can bring a dramatic cost reduction and contribute to IT operations excellence. These solutions are put in place by IT operational teams, with the following possible applications:

  • Monitoring & Root Cause Analysis – Sets up alerts about service and performance issues, while identifying root causes thereof.
  • Proactive Control of Service Performance & Availability – Forecasting the states of future systems and how they affect the stability and performance of the IT infrastructure.
  • Problem Assignment – Determination of problems and assignment to appropriate owner for resolution. 

The Continuity Software Approach

Continuity Software offers AvailabilityGuard to proactively detect single-points-of-failure and other violations that can result in IT outages. Employing a unique risk detection engine that models, correlates and validates the multi-layered infrastructure against the industry’s largest knowledge base of infrastructure risks and best practices, AvailabilityGuard is effective not only at identifying those anomalies, but also at predicting their impact and offering corrective actions to the relevant IT teams. This allows IT organizations to deliver an even higher level of operational stability and service availability, while reducing IT operational costs.

How does it work? In a nutshell, we can describe how AvailabilityGuard works using the following four steps:

  1. Collection of data from multiple infrastructure layers in a non-intrusive manner.
  2. Prediction of possible future outages via built-in risk detection mechanisms.
  3. Prescription of actions needed to be taken in order to prevent future outages, which are automatically sent to the appropriate business owners.
  4. Visualization and measurement of operational stability and configuration quality, including correlation of technical issues to the business services affected.

IT Operations Analytics have proven to be a critical to protecting IT investment and maximizing the performance and reliability of the IT infrastructure. By providing a complete window into IT operations, executives can make better decisions with an eye to achieving business objectives as efficiently and cost-effectively as possible.

Roy Goffer
Roy Goffer
Director of Marketing at Continuity Software and an internet and technology enthusiast.

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