3 Ways for Enterprises to Optimize APM and IPM Investments
February 07, 2017

John Kim
HighBar Partners

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As enterprises leverage scarce hardware resources within increasingly virtualized environments, storage has proven to be a common culprit behind application performance issues. In response to this problem, sophisticated tools have emerged that allow IT organizations to understand and manage application storage performance requirements and deploy cost-effective infrastructure.

In parallel, public cloud proliferation is changing the traditional design methodology of the modern enterprise data center. While the long-term plans of many enterprises to migrate applications to public cloud remain intact, on-premise IT has exhibited tremendous resilience and undergone more of an evolution than revolution. New and innovative solutions have evolved to address the transition to the hybrid data center, and balancing the use of on-premise and cloud-based services will be another key challenge for IT organizations over the coming years.

A consistent theme is that control and visibility are essential to application performance assurance in any environment, and IT organizations continue to invest in both Application Performance Management (APM) and Infrastructure Performance Management (IPM) solutions. APM tools allow developers to optimize their code and enhance user experience, however, these tools often fail to examine and optimize the core infrastructure responsible for application delivery. IPM solutions have emerged as a meaningful complement to APM for this very reason.

1. Evaluate a Vendor's Ability to Scale

The complexity of infrastructure responsible for application delivery is quickly surpassing the limits of human comprehension, and performance problems are more difficult to find and less correlated to just the storage elements. Enterprises will need to rely on machine learning-based analytics and automation to identify and remediate root causes of performance degradation. APM/IPM solutions must work together seamlessly to make IT departments more efficient and to guarantee a positive experience for application users.

2. Insist on Real Time, End-To-End Performance Management

In a hybrid environment, end-to-end performance management is critical and must be truly end-to-end. Most claims of end-to-end infrastructure monitoring are driven by vendor marketing departments, while the products themselves only address a specific subset of the data center.

Enterprises must do their research. A solution that covers all key infrastructure components such as servers, network and storage offers a compelling option that can provide comprehensive data center performance monitoring in real time. Moreover, a performance management solution that covers current on-premise and future off-premise needs will be critical to the successful deployment of the hybrid data center.

3. Make Your Customer Demands Known

Customer requirements and feedback define product roadmaps and the evolution of IT infrastructure on-premise, in the cloud, or a combination thereof. Enterprise customers must make their needs and demands known to APM/IPM vendors in a clear and detailed fashion. This collaboration will not only help deliver products of value but also help vendors better design products to address real world problems.

The data center environment of today is more complex than ever. If you want your IT organization to operate efficiently, you must be able to proactively identify and remediate application performance issues within the infrastructure with the context of the application. By focusing in these three areas – scalability, end-to-end visibility and collaboration – enterprises will get the most out of APM and IPM solutions and drive a concurrent evolution in their ability to manage IT.

John Kim is a Co-Founder and Managing Partner of HighBar Partners, an investor in Virtual Instruments.

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