Managing the Complexity of Today’s Hybrid IT

By |June 13th, 2018|

With enterprises adding more capacity off premises—in the public cloud, managed hosting, and colocation data centers—it’s no surprise that IT environments are becoming increasingly hybrid. A recent Voice of the Enterprise survey suggests that by 2019, less than half of all workloads will run on premises.

While enterprise data centers will continue to morph into larger facilities, many will still opt to operate on-premises, privately owned data centers. And some outsourcing will continue. It’s undeniable that hybrid IT environments offer many benefits, but their increased complexity creates security gaps, risk and a host of other issues.

Availability and Security Concerns

Organizations considering public cloud options face security, data sovereignty, service availability and latency concerns. Unused or under-utilized cloud instances and workload-specific service requirements, including availability and security, could add to cloud costs. Some organizations insist that all net new applications be built for the cloud or delivered as a service. Others are updating existing workloads where possible. In short, organizations considering public cloud options have begun to address the concerns that directly affect their bottom line.

Establishing Business Strategies and Specific Goals

Managing hybrid IT environments will pose an even greater challenge as next-generation edge computing continues to grow. IoT and the distributed cloud will expand these boundaries, which, in turn, will boost demand for datacenter capacity. To run efficiently, hybrid IT environments need to spell out a business strategy and specific goals.

Evaluations must assess key factors per workload in addition to cost, including application performance and latency. The new hybrid must take into account business risk, as well as availability, redundancy and security concerns. An awareness of long-term goals must replace head-in-the-sand thinking when it comes efficiently managing hybrid IT environment

Maximizing DCIM to Address Hybrid Complexity

The increasing complexity of hybrid IT environments clearly underscores the importance of deploying some type of DCIM software.

This software can simplify things by providing visibility across datacenters, real-time monitoring, and capacity planning. Uniting data acquired from DCIM and IT systems management software with financial tools allows infrastructure managers to create standardized metrics and performance indicators for BEV (Business Enterprise Value) decisions.

Internal operational and business procedures and workflows must be updated to fully exploit the benefits of DCIM data and analysis. Dovetailing IT and facilities departments will help align IT demand with a datacenter’s resources to improve capacity planning and management. It can also help with service provider performance reviews in the new hybrid IT environment.

Role-based information dashboards can also help present customized views for facility managers, IT managers, business line managers and executive management. Helping even further would be ongoing review processes to monitor how each venue meets established performance metrics.

Leveraging DCIM to Assess Workloads and Venues

Workload venues will shift based on current needs and infrastructure design. The right DCIM software can provide the real-time data an enterprise needs to assess location, infrastructure status, power, cooling and other pertinent data. Evaluating a center’s BEV begins with a DCIM’s ability to establish the cost effectiveness of a workload location. Is the location cost-effective for the work demanded of it? Could results be enhanced by moving to a cloud environment? Management and operations protocols will invariably differ from one datacenter location to the next. All the more reason for cost and efficiency considerations to follow standardized quantifiable metrics. This is needed to ensure accurate real-world comparisons across a specific hybrid environment.

Benefits of DCIM Asset Management

The benefits of DCIM software also extend to asset management. DCIM tools enable auto-discovery of IP-connected datacenter and IT assets, including accurate real-time asset tracking. DCIM workflow management makes it easy to track asset moves, adds and changes, which can reduce human error and create an automated audit trail. DCIM software also speeds issue resolutions. Most business-savvy CIOs know how deferring problems can impact mission-critical data center operations.

IT enterprises are becoming increasingly hybrid. While these environments offer many benefits, their increased complexity creates security gaps, added risk, and a host of other issues. All the more reason today’s enterprises need powerful DCIM tools to manager workflows, venue location, and assets.