A recent customer interview highlighted the potential cost reduction savings that can come from deploying ITFM in large enterprise environments. This particular ROI case is based on a large Solaris server farm with attendant storage devices under the ITFM scope. The resulting case study: – IT Foundation Management Cost Reduction & ROI (available on our website here…) – documents an annual savings of over $4.5 million per year just in efficiency improvements.
The ROI for this case study does not take into account any benefits realized from increased uptime, enhanced compliance capabilities, recovered service opportunities, customer satisfaction improvement or security needs. It simply looks at the efficiency impacts to arrive at an average present value (PV) savings of $4.5 million per year, and that savings gave this customer an immediate ROI that more than justified their use of IT Foundation Management in less than 6 months.
There are many reasons why our customers see these kinds of efficiency improvements, and the case study does a good job of bringing a lot of these reasons to the surface. I particularly like the maturity matrix on the final page of the study. It tells the real story of how this customer used IT Foundation Management to dramatically increase the maturity of their IT Operations practices while demonstrating the financial value to the organization.
Enforcing compliance (like with the ITIL framework) at the foundational level of the IT infrastructure is a costly manual effort fraught with inaccuracies. Each time a change is made to the IT infrastructure, the change must be documented and it must follow the prescribed compliance process. Most of the time, change documentation is entered into one or more systems manually, burning up precious man-hours and falling prey to human error. The changes are triggered from a variety of sources including remediating incidents, installing patches, updating hardware or software configurations, upgrading software, and so on.
For many IT organizations, keeping up with change documentation for compliance is a burning issue. More and more we are tasked with documenting the details of every change made to the IT Infrastructure, requiring our admins and engineers to manually document each and every change they make.
With IT Foundation Management those changes are recorded automatically, down to the keystroke. Records are created in real-time, they are accurate, and manual documentation requirements are completely eliminated. Changes can even be scanned in real-time to detect threats and proactively enforce policies. The change records are captured automatically and compliance processes are enforced programmatically.
ConsoleWorks allows us to enforce the ITIL framework and accountability on critical network servers by recording server and privileged user activity from the root accounts. These records are then safely stored in ConsoleWorks, where no one can tamper with them.Global Tool Lead, Leading Pharmaceutical
It’s a win, win on every front. Systems administrators don’t enjoy manually documenting changes they do – they would rather spend their time solving technical challenges. With ITFM the time previously spent on manually documenting changes becomes available for other activities, often giving the IT team an opportunity to devote more time and energy to strategic priorities. The business is better served with the accurate records that prove the practice without concern for errors introduced by the manual documentation process. The company saves money. More value-added work gets done…
Whether driven by ROI, compliance, or just good old common sense, automating change documentation with IT Foundation Management is the right way to get the job done.
The entire idea of having a CMDB is to have a single, definitive resource for the configuration of all IT assets. The concept is great but the unfortunate reality is that many times we don’t have a single CMDB and it is not always up-to-date and accurate.
So what happens if the CMDB is not accurate? Well, if the CMDB is not accurate then it could deliver information that would provide access to the wrong asset and I can assure you that no matter how hard (or long) an admin works on the wrong device, the problem will not be fixed. Don’t laugh. It happens, and when it does the experience can be extremely frustrating and costly to the business.
Remember, the CMDB stores information – the information that is entered into it. Much of the information is entered manually by people in many situations and it is very easy to make a mistake. There are also a lot of changes happening that need be recorded in the CMDB and when changes occur, the CMDB is usually updated after-the-fact. That leaves an information accuracy gap that gets repeated over and over again.
I know of one situation where a server was misnamed in the CMDB – sending the admin to the wrong server to fix a problem that didn’t exist there. It was a frustrating experience for everyone involved. This is a classic case of people responding appropriately to a situation based on the information that is available; but because the information is not accurate, the outcome is unsuccessful. When that happens on a critical asset, the frustration (and business impact) starts to escalate quickly.
ConsoleWorks resolves these kinds of issues because it is used to make the connection to servers and other IT devices. Once the connection is made the first time, ConsoleWorks “remembers” how to make that connection from that point forward. This resolves the issue of the out-of-sync CMDB problem. The naming convention in ConsoleWorks requires unique names for each connection eliminating the name issues that can lead to frustration and negative business impact.