July 22, 2009

Managing Virtualization in 2009

  • A Double-Edged Sword
  • Yankee Group for Xangati
Virtualization, cloud computing, Web 2.0 and consumerization are radically changing the face of IT. Any information can now be delivered to any user at any time over multiple networks and devices. This puts an even bigger strain on the IT department's ability to manage the underlying technology. Today, an IT department spends more than 80% of its annual budget to simply "keep the lights" on which limits the organizations ability to innovate. To reduce this percentage, the management of the IT infrastructure needs to undergo a major transformation as the legacy management tools and strategies will no longer be sufficient.

IT management 2.0, built on Web 2.0 principles, will empower the IT department to manage the infrastructure through the "eyes of the end user." Additionally, the management 2.0 principles allow users to self generate trouble tickets and kick off the problem solving workflow immediately. Problems will now be solved faster as the service desk will have better information at their disposal. To get started, we make the following recommendations:    
  • Stop the spend on management 1.0 tools. Despite the fact that many organizations have spent millions on traditional management tools, continuing to do so is simply throwing good money after bad. Cease the investment on 1.0 tools and invest in management tools that are built for a virtual environment.
  • Embrace consumerization and use it to help with management tasks. Web 2.0 tools, self service front ends and collaboration technologies can all be used to augment the way users are supported. Fighting this trend and sticking with traditional management methods is a losing battle.
  • Put the management 2.0 systems in place prior to wide scale deployments of virtualization. Don't minimize the impact that virtualization can have on the organization by not having the correct management tools in place.
Traditional management systems also known as 1.0 management were built for a different era of IT. An era where the infrastructure was static, users were located in corporate offices and virtualization did not exist. The infrastructure has evolved and the management tools must keep pace.

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