With growing numbers of businesses planning or implementing digital transformation, migration to the cloud has become a priority for IT teams. Cloud services provide the agility and flexibility that is key to the success of a digital transformation.
However, IT leaders continues to report that day-to-day operational issues are taking time that could be spent on the strategic aspects of migration and digital transformation. To maintain momentum and focus on innovation, IT needs a better way to deal with day-to-day issues. Infrastructure automation represents an opportunity to put migration back on track.
Routine Tasks Inhibit Progress
A 2017 survey by IDG Research found that a number of routine tasks are inhibiting transformation initiatives.
Firefighting to remedy unexpected issues or outages was seen as the biggest problem, followed closely by the task of managing disparate business applications. Root cause analysis to identify the source of outages and recovery from outages also figured highly as barriers. Dealing with these issues reduced IT productivity and added costs to IT budgets that are already under pressure.
Respondents indicated that some of these tasks could take up to two weeks of unplanned time. Predicting the impact of business or technology changes on scheduled tasks, for example, averaged two weeks, while recovery from infrastructure incidents was taking around six days. More serious incidents could take even more time out of migration schedules.
Automation Reduces the Load
A solution that automates these routine tasks will free time for more strategic migration initiatives without compromising availability and operational efficiency.
Automated tools improve the speed and accuracy of information reporting. These automated tools can reduce the time taken to carry out infrastructure assessment and improve accuracy. VTG’s ZENfra tool, for example, reduces the complexity of data capture.
It collects data from log files, processes the data and provides customized reports. Automated tools reduce the risk of human error and provide an accurate basis for assessment.
Infrastructure automation tools can help teams identify potential problems before they occur. This enables IT teams to respond proactively to prevent outages and reduce downtime, as well as cutting the time they need to spend recovering from incidents.
Data from automation tools can help teams make better decisions about the premise infrastructure they have to maintain during a migration. Minor upgrades or other improvements can reduce the risk of outages and cut the number of variable to assess when carrying out root cause analysis.
Set Up Processes
To maintain efficiency and make the most effective use of automation tools, it’s important to develop comprehensive processes for managing day-to-day operations.
Documented procedures for data collection, processing, analysis and reporting with automated tools can save time and eliminate the risk of error. The process should also include rules for collection of multiple data points to ensure that information is always up to date and takes account of any late changes.
Respondents to the IDG Research survey felt confident that automation could free time from routine tasks. Around 44 percent felt automation cut significantly improve IT’s ability to counter issues and outages. And, 38 percent believed automation would lead to faster problem resolution. Those savings can help IT focus on migration and other initiatives that support digital transformation.