March 24, 2016

In a perfect world, deployments would always go as planned – however in the world of IT we all know that is not the case. There's a long list of reasons why Application Performance Management (APM) deployments might fail. Some reasons can be aligned to people, others to process and finally some to product ...

October 05, 2015

As a follow-up to my previous columns on change management, I’d like to step back a little and shine a light on an even broader landscape. Here I’ll touch briefly on process, dialog, and workflow as a triad that can help IT organizations move forward toward a more efficient and potentially more business-aligned way of working ...

September 02, 2015

In Part 3 of a three-part series on change management, I’ll look at how the technologies for service modeling, automation, visualization, and self-service are evolving to address the more dynamic demands of trends such as cloud, agile, and mobile ...

August 25, 2015

This is Part 2 of a three-part series on change management. In this blog, I’ll look at what it takes to make change management initiatives succeed — including metrics and requirements, best practice concerns, and some of the more common pitfalls ...

August 19, 2015

This is the first of a three-part series on change management. In this blog, I’ll try to answer the question, “What is change management?” from both a process and a benefits (or use-case) perspective ...

July 14, 2015

In my last blog, I discussed how IT service management (ITSM) roles (and rules) are becoming more operations-aware. The blog examined a number of key game-changers for ITSM, including a growing requirement for shared analytics; the rise (not the demise) of the CMDB/CMS and service modeling; cloud as both a catalyst for innovation and a resource to be managed; and support for enterprise services such as facilities and HR. I also discussed two topics, mobility and unified endpoint management, that I’d like to examine in more depth here ...

July 08, 2015

Both the “rules” and the “roles” governing IT Service Management (ITSM) are evolving to support a far-broader need for inclusiveness across IT, and between IT and its service consumers. Recent EMA research, What Is the Future of IT Service Management? (March 2015), exposed a number of shifting trends that might surprise many in the industry ...

July 07, 2015

Both the “rules” and the “roles” governing IT Service Management (ITSM) are evolving to support a far-broader need for inclusiveness across IT, and between IT and its service consumers. Recent EMA research, What Is the Future of IT Service Management? (March 2015), exposed a number of shifting trends that might surprise many in the industry ...

June 11, 2015

Here is a suggested Application Discovery and Dependency Mapping (ADDM) checklist summary, addressing key areas of product differentiation ...

June 10, 2015

The Application Discovery and Dependency Mapping (ADDM) market is evolving rapidly, and in multiple directions at once. While this can be confusing, it is overall a good thing. Through this diversity, vendors delivering ADDM capabilities are, as an aggregate, seeking to be more responsive to a yet broader set of constituents, use cases, and roles than ever before. This includes requirements emerging from internal and external (public) cloud, the extended enterprise across ecosystems, agile application development, and a dramatic upswing in currency, ease of deployment and modularity. In some cases you will want to be sure to select an ADDM package that integrates with your core CMDB at initial deployment. In other cases it may come at a later time as a separate investment. On the other hand, depending on use case and overall readiness, an ADDM package may be the right starting point for growing your CMDB System in Phase One even without a core CMDB ...

May 20, 2015

Very few CMDB solutions are currently packaged as standalone options. For instance, you may already have a CMDB embedded in your service desk that’s not yet in use. However, you may decide for any number of reasons that your current investment isn’t the one to take you the whole distance going forward. Moreover, there are a growing number of variations on a theme — as some CMDBs are packaged primarily as BSM solutions optimized for service impact and performance, others target workflow and automation, and some CMDB solutions are extensions of application discovery and dependency mapping tools ...

May 01, 2015

In writing CMDB Systems: Making Change Work in the Age of Cloud and Agile, we gained a lot by talking to deployments. In the spirit of our own recommendations for how to manage and optimize a CMDB-related initiative, our goal was to learn from reality more than just preach a series of best practices. What I’ve chosen to write about here are just a few highlights, following four key areas of interest: Dialog, Communication and Stakeholder Planning; Architecture; Cloud; and Agile ...

April 30, 2015

Almost three-fourths (70%) of companies forget about documenting changes, up from 57% last year, according to Netwrix Corporation's 2015 State of IT Changes Survey. Undocumented changes pose a hidden threat to business continuity and the integrity of sensitive data. The survey shows that 67% of companies suffer from service downtime due to unauthorized or incorrect changes to system configurations, while the worst offenders are again enterprises in 73% of cases ...

April 15, 2015

Everyone presumably loves a good mystery. And in fact the questions “What is a CMDB?” and “What is its relevance in the age of (cloud) (agile) (fill-in-the-blank)?” often provoke such conflicted industry responses that they do suggest the presence of some mystery underfoot. But we didn’t set out to write a mystery novel per se. Instead, CMDB Systems: Making Change Work in the Age of Cloud and Agile is designed to serve as both a guide and a chronicle of real-world experiences — honoring the mystery by sharing different points of view, while trying to help our readers optimize their CMDB planning for what is increasingly becoming a positive and successful initiative ...

November 12, 2014

This is the time of year when stores start to decorate with holly and tinsel, snowflakes and twinkling lights, as they prepare for the biggest revenue-generating season of the year. While online sales organizations do not need to hang any mistletoe, they should be preparing for what is becoming – more and more each year – their biggest sales season as well. As e-commerce represents a greater percentage of any company's revenue, the challenge to meet customer needs online is more important to the company's success each year. With this in mind, APMdigest asked experts from across the APM industry for their opinions on how to best prepare for the challenges of Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and the Holiday Shopping Season. The first six technologies presented here start out with mainstream APM capabilities that are essential to e-commerce success ...

July 17, 2014

Today's blog will center on some examples of we call "external metrics" based on use cases, as well as on planning meaningful ROI metrics in conjunction with specific use-case benefits ...

June 26, 2014

It may sound childlike, but a good place to start before putting any metrics in place is to ask,"Why?" Probably the first answer at the top of most adopters' minds is because I have no choice if I'm going to sell this thing. Other bad reasons to establish metrics include to justify the cost of the CMDB project and to provide an absolute yardstick of CMDB success. While both of these motivators may sound good politically, they create a false notion of how value can be directly measured around a CMDB System ...

April 17, 2014

In my previous blog, CMDB System Use Cases - Part One, I discussed use cases such as Change Impact Management and Change Automation, and Asset Management and Financial Optimization. In this follow-up blog I cover two more CMDB use cases ...

April 14, 2014

The least effective way to begin a CMDB deployment is to simply assume that by having the software in place and feeding it with assorted data you're building a system that will magically bring you value. That's why I like to stress "relevance" and "use case" when planning a CMDB initiative. The following is a summary of CMDB/CMS-related use-cases based on observations from real deployments ...

March 27, 2014

In Part 2 of this article series, we will look at the rising popularity of Application Performance Monitoring (APM), the resurgence of BSM, and how APM and BSM are converging to achieve the goal of IT and business alignment ...

February 12, 2014

In spite of the array of confusing opinions, bad press, and general contentiousness that has recently surrounded Configuration Management Database (CMDB) deployments, EMA is seeing a resurgence of interest in both the CMDB and the more federated Configuration Management System (CMS) ...

January 14, 2014

The first step in making any system more automatic (and thus more reliable) is to dramatically reduce the amount of manual maintenance required ...

January 13, 2014

The Configuration Management Database, or CMDB, was conceived a few years back as a way to discover and maintain a repository of all components on which an application is dependent, along with information about their relationships. The thought was that combining the CMDB with real-time monitoring metrics obtained from the underlying components could provide insight into the health state of complex applications, with early warning of incipient problems, and guidance to root cause when incidents do occur. Sounds like a really great idea. Why then, has the CMDB seen only limited adoption and little commercial success?

November 08, 2013

In my last column, I discussed the importance of Application Discovery and Dependency Mapping (ADDM) as a tremendously valuable resource for managing and optimizing application and business services, as well as the IT infrastructures, and supporting them, in the age of cloud, agile, and consumer-driven IT. In this column, I'm going to delve more closely into our evaluation criteria — as they applied to the radar, but also as they might apply to you in making an investment choice in ADDM ...

October 01, 2013

Application Discovery and Dependency Mapping (ADDM) may sound arcane — and sadly to some extent it still remains so. The notion of actively discovering application and infrastructure interdependencies for their impacts on service delivery, is still sometimes a combination of technological wizardry, domain expertise and sheer force of will. But the capabilities for doing this are evolving to become far more dynamic and varied in design and value than was true even two or three years ago ...

July 09, 2013

The EMA report Ecosystem Cloud: Managing and Optimizing IT Services Across the Full Cloud Mosaic is complete. In mid May I wrote a column making predictions about the results, which were just then beginning to come in. I made eleven bets about the results. Here is the list as I assessed it ...

May 16, 2013

With its just-launched “Ecosystem Cloud” research, EMA is trying to understand how different sized IT organizations are managing applications and other services with options for internal cloud, external cloud, hybrid, and traditional infrastructure ...

May 09, 2013

The more effectively we can integrate management tools at every level and the more effectively we can manage the delivery of IT as a service to our constituents, the more value we add to the enterprise and its mission. At the same time, the further we enlarge those circles to encompass and integrate infrastructures that were previously disconnected, the greater the number of elements we need to incorporate, monitor and manage. We need something that ties all these disparate pieces together. That’s where the configuration management database (CMDB) fits in ...

April 22, 2013

EMA VP Dennis Drogseth and EMA Director Torsten Volk discuss recent EMA research such as The Service Desk in the Age of Cloud and Agile and Demystifying Cloud as well as prior EMA research on cloud adoptions as they impact strategic management requirements ...

April 15, 2013

When you think about it, we’re not just focusing on application and network performance solely for the sake of performance. In today’s business environment, we’re focusing on performance because IT has become a service — and ultimately, we are the ones in charge of the delivery of that service. Given that reality, does it make any sense to treat IT operations management and IT service management as distinct and separate activities? I submit that it does not ...

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