Losing $$ Due to Ticket Times? Hack Response Time Using Data
June 03, 2016

Collin Firenze
Optanix

Share this

Without the proper expertise and tools in place to quickly isolate, diagnose, and resolve an incident, a quick routine error can result in hours of downtime – causing significant interruption in business operations that can impact both business revenue and employee productivity. How can we stop these little instances from turning into major fallouts? Major companies and organizations, take heed:

1. Identify the correlation between issues to expedite time to notify and time to resolve

Not understanding the correlation between issues is detrimental to timely resolutions. With a network monitoring solution in place, lack of automated correlation can generate excess "noise." This then requires support teams to act on numerous individualized alerts, rather than a single ticket that has all relevant events and information for the support end-user.

The correlated monitoring approach provides a holistic view into the network failure for support teams. Enabling support teams to analyze the network failure by utilizing the correlated events to efficiently identify the root cause will provide them the opportunity to promptly execute the corrective action to resolve the issue at hand.

Correlation consolidates all relevant information into a single ticket allowing support teams to largely reduce their staffing models, with only one support engineer needed to act on the incident as opposed to numerous resources engaging on individualized alerts.

2. Constantly analyzing raw data for trends helps IT teams proactively spot and prevent recurring issues

Aside from the standard reactive response of a support team, there is substantial benefit in the proactive analysis of raw data from your environment. By being proactive, trends and failures can be identified, followed by corrective and preventative actions taken to ensure support teams are not spending time investigating repeat issues. This approach not only creates a more stable environment with fewer failures, but also allows support teams to reduce manual hours and cost by avoiding "wasted" investigation on known and reoccurring issues.

Within a support organization, a Problem Management Group (PMG) is often implemented to fulfill the role of proactive analysis on raw data. In such instances, a PMG will create various scripts and calculation that will turn the raw data into a meaningful representation of the data set, to identify areas of concern such as:

■ Common types of failures

■ Failures within a specific region or location

■ Issues with a specific end-device type or model

■ Reoccurring issues at a specific time/day

■ Any trends in software or firmware revisions.

Once the raw data is analyzed by the PMG, the results can be relayed to the support team for review so a plan can be formalized to take the appropriate preventative action. The support team will work to present the data and their proposed solution, and seek approval to execute the corrective/preventative steps.

3. Present data in interactive dashboards and business intelligence reports to ensure proper understanding

Not every support team has the benefit of a PMG. In this specific circumstance, it's important that the system monitoring tools are fulfilling the role of the PMG analysis, and presenting the data in an easy-to-understand format for the end-user. From a tools perspective, the data analysis can be approached from both an interactive dashboard perspective, as well as through the use of business intelligence reports.

Interactive dashboards are a great way of presenting data in a format that caters to all audiences, from administrative and management level, and technical engineers. A combination of both graphs (i.e. pie charts, line graphs, etc.) and summarized metrics (i.e. Today, This Week, Last 30 days, etc.) are utilized to display the analyzed data, with the ability to filter capabilities to allow the end-user to view only desired information without the interference of all analyzed data which may not be applicable to their investigation.

In fact, a more "customizable" approach to raw data analysis would be a Business Intelligence Reporting Solution (BIRS). Essentially, the BIRS collects the raw data for the end-user, and provides drag and drop reporting, so that any desired data elements of interest can be incorporated into a customized on-demand report. What is particularly helpful for the user is the easy ability to save "filtering criteria" that would be beneficial to utilize repeatedly (i.e. Monthly Business Review Reports).

With routine errors, the main goal is to stay ahead of them by using data to identify correlations. Through effective event correlation, and by empowering teams with raw data, you can ensure that issues are quickly mitigated and don't pose the risk of impacting company ROI and system availability.

Collin Firenze is Associate Director at Optanix.

Share this

The Latest

May 26, 2020

Nearly 3,700 people told GitLab about their DevOps journeys. Respondents shared that their roles are changing dramatically, no matter where they sit in the organization. The lines surrounding the traditional definitions of dev, sec, ops and test have blurred, and as we enter the second half of 2020, it is perhaps more important than ever for companies to understand how these roles are evolving ...

May 21, 2020

As cloud computing continues to grow, tech pros say they are increasingly prioritizing areas like hybrid infrastructure management, application performance management (APM), and security management to optimize delivery for the organizations they serve, according to SolarWinds IT Trends Report 2020: The Universal Language of IT ...

May 20, 2020

Businesses see digital experience as a growing priority and a key to their success, with execution requiring a more integrated approach across development, IT and business users, according to Digital Experiences: Where the Industry Stands ...

May 19, 2020

Fully 90% of those who use observability tooling say those tools are important to their team's software development success, including 39% who say observability tools are very important ...

May 18, 2020

As our production application systems continuously increase in complexity, the challenges of understanding, debugging, and improving them keep growing by orders of magnitude. The practice of Observability addresses both the social and the technological challenges of wrangling complexity and working toward achieving production excellence. New research shows how observable systems and practices are changing the APM landscape ...

May 14, 2020
Digital technologies have enveloped our lives like never before. Be it on the personal or professional front, we have become dependent on the accurate functioning of digital devices and the software running them. The performance of the software is critical in running the components and levers of the new digital ecosystem. And to ensure our digital ecosystem delivers the required outcomes, a robust performance testing strategy should be instituted ...
May 13, 2020

The enforced change to working from home (WFH) has had a massive impact on businesses, not just in the way they manage their employees and IT systems. As the COVID-19 pandemic progresses, enterprise IT teams are looking to answer key questions such as: Which applications have become more critical for working from home? ...

May 12, 2020

In ancient times — February 2020 — EMA research found that more than 50% of IT leaders surveyed were considering new ITSM platforms in the near future. The future arrived with a bang as IT organizations turbo-pivoted to deliver and support unprecedented levels and types of services to a global workplace suddenly working from home ...

May 11, 2020

The Internet of Things (IoT) is changing the world. From augmented reality advanced analytics to new consumer solutions, IoT and the cloud are together redefining both how we work and how we engage with our audiences. They are changing how we live, as well ...

May 07, 2020

Despite IT professionals' confidence in their ability to support today's much greater dependence on digital services, there is a rise in application performance errors reported by more than half of consumers, according to the Impact of COVID-19 on Digital Transformation survey from xMatters ...