The Value of Automation for IT Service Management
By Matt Wong, VP Delivery & Operations, CloudSphere
Whether you’re part of a large or small-to-mid-sized company, as a business you have customers who rely on you for your mission critical services.
Reliability, efficiency and accuracy are crucial components of the services you provide. And while you might have a team who can build and maintain your clients’ systems and data, doing this well takes time. Not to mention that people can make mistakes, and any errors can be costly for you and your clients.
This is where automation comes in. It helps enable Service Management to be done more efficiently, especially on a 24/7 basis at scale. Read on to learn how automation can help ITSM providers build stronger foundations for their clients from the start—from asset discovery to applications, and metrics reporting.
What Is Automation for ITSM?
At the foundation, automation for IT Service Management requires the discovery and inventory of all IT assets, business critical applications and services across the entire infrastructure.
Once established, re-discovery to re-establish the baseline of IT assets, applications, and services are crucial for ongoing activities such as:
- Change management
- Incident prioritization
- Incident impact analysis
- Problem resolution
How Is Automation Used for ITSM?
Consider the following types of companies that can benefit from automation:
- Small, medium and large enterprise companies with in-house IT expertise
- Small, medium and large enterprise companies that use outsourced IT services
Each type of company may be managing large, complex or small, simple IT workloads. For all situations, however, employing automation tools provides value when used to manage IT assets, applications, and services.
Of course, it is not necessary for companies with IT expertise to use automation tools to manage small infrastructures. However, the use of automation tools is still of benefit in these situations, as they can help enable better, more efficient use of human capital to attend to issues that cannot be automated.
Companies on tight budgets might also believe they can save money by not employing automation. Ultimately, however, not using automation can put you at a disadvantage against your competitors when it comes to operational efficiency and agility. This often results in poor customer satisfaction.
Projects that Benefit from Automation
Automation provides value for a variety of different types of IT work. Consider the following IT projects and ongoing activities:
- Infrastructure rightsizing and optimization
- Service modernization
- IT Service Management activities
Each project type can be managed as one and done, short-term projects or as ongoing operational activities, depending on your business size and scope.
Project Use Cases: Migrations, Infrastructure Rightsizing and Service Modernization
Whether you are moving assets from on-premises to cloud, cloud to cloud, or cloud back to on-premises, automation can prove to be invaluable to support your project needs. Especially with large IT infrastructures that cannot be managed with a simple spreadsheet.
With the proper data sets and optimization rules, automation tools can also be used to provide rightsizing recommendations for your current IT infrastructure. For example, a customer may wish to assess and determine if they should add or delete additional resources to optimize and match current usage traffic patterns.
By using discovery and assessment automation tools, you can accomplish these tasks quickly. Migration projects, rightsizing efforts, optimization, and modernization all benefit from automation, even if these types of projects have limited durations.
Ongoing Use Cases: IT Services Management Activities
For ongoing IT services operations, like security monitoring or change management, ITSM has clear benefits when it employs automation tools. Continual use of these tools can help keep IT infrastructures running smoothly and efficiently.
Companies may also consider leveraging automation tools for rightsizing, optimization, and modernization on an ongoing basis. Companies adopting a program for quarterly, semi-annual, or annual audits over the life of an IT infrastructure can better maintain cost-effective and efficient operations.
For large migration projects with multiple data centers over numerous geographies, the use of automation tools provides value to plan, manage, and monitor as the project progresses.
Although some companies might resist implementing automation tools to avoid the cost, there are many benefits that should not be ignored. The value of automation far outweighs the cost of employing such tools. Automation can help these businesses become more operationally efficient, scalable, and cost-effective. And these tools can certainly help them become a lot more competitive.
About Matt Wong
As VP of Delivery & Operations, Matt is responsible for ensuring the success of Cloudsphere’s Delivery Partners. He is one of the early contributors to cloud applications and services, beginning with his notable work for technology giants such as Apple, Hewlett-Packard and Xerox, and has built and led large product development teams as VP of Engineering at Panasonic Cloud Entertainment and VP of Engineering at Canal+ Technologies.
Matt holds a Masters of Science in Mechanical Engineering at California State University, San Jose; a Management Certificate (MDE) in Business Management/ Entrepreneurship at the University of California, Los Angeles, Anderson School of Business; a Bachelor’s of Science in Mechanical Engineering at the University of California, Berkeley, and a Bachelor’s of Science Equivalency/Computer Science at California State University, Chico (program via Hewlett Packard).
Connect with Matt on LinkedIn.
CloudSphere makes digital transformations easy. Throughout the cloud journey, we empower our partners and customers to Discover, Plan, Migrate, Optimize, Modernize, and Secure entire cloud environments with automated features that save businesses time, money and disruptions.