Capacity management: could it be the answer to your resourcing needs?

Overspending on resources?

In an increasingly digital world, overspending on technical resources, alongside the human resources (or skills) to back them up, is common.

If you view over-provisioning as a necessary evil, you’re not alone. A recent independent study discovered that 90% of CIOs feel the same way, with the majority only using about half of the cloud capacity that they’ve paid for.

But, why pay for resources that you’re not going to use?

Well, it’s no secret that over provisioning on IT resources is better than the alternative. Understandably, you’d rather pay above-the-odds for ‘too many’ functional digital systems, than risk the outages associated with ‘too few’. A 2015 study by Populus discovered that almost a third of all outages on critical systems are still capacity related, proving that over provisioning is not the only problem here.

>See also: How to bring capacity planning practices into the big data age

It can seem as if organisations are stuck between a rock and a hard place: do you spend thousands and thousands of pounds from your (already) tight budget and over provision, or do you make an upfront saving and risk becoming one of the 29% of companies experiencing business disruption, downtime or worse when the demand on your services exceeds the resources you have in place? How do you optimise costs without risking future, potentially devastating, strain on your resources?

Enter IT capacity management

In a nutshell, IT Capacity Management gives you a snapshot view of all your business resources against the demands placed upon them. This enables you to ‘right-size’ your resources and ensure that you can meet current requirements without over provisioning and over spending.

The level of demand placed upon business resources is constantly fluctuating. That’s why capacity management models should run alongside your current operations as part of your ongoing business strategy. It’s one way to be proactive when it comes to resourcing.

However, it doesn’t stop there… capacity management also enables you to prepare your business for the future. It continually measures the performance and levels of use of your resources in order to make predictions, which will enable you to prepare for any future changes in terms of demand.

>See also: Enterprise storage in 2017: trends and challenges

What can capacity management do for your business?

There are a number of benefits to having IT capacity management included in your company strategy. It gives you visibility of your entire IT infrastructure, including all physical, virtual and cloud environments. The importance of this should not be underestimated; it can enable you to:

● Optimise costs – It’s simple- if you have a clear view of all your resources, you can see where they’re not required, which means that you won’t feel the need to purchase them “just in case”. Capacity management can be seen as a long-term investment- especially given its ability to predict future trends based on current performance.
● Easily adjust IT resources to meet service demands – With the ability to see exactly which of your services are being placed under the highest amount of pressure in terms of demand, you’ll be able to adjust your business plan accordingly to relieve some of that pressure- allowing you to even out the playing field by ensuring that one service area isn’t being drained whilst others are idle. You’ll be able to add, remove or adjust compute, storage, network and other IT resources as and when they are needed.
● Deploy applications on time – You’ll be able to reserve IT resources to be used for new applications when needed, resulting in a faster time to deployment.

>See also: Ease of use: software-defined storage for the enterprise

● Reduced time and human resources spend – Imagine the hours being spent by your employees to plan and calculate capacity usage and availability. By implementing a real, ongoing plan which can run in the background, you free up more time for your employees to pursue higher value tasks.

Capacity management solves the age-old problem of optimising costs for today’s CIOs. While this has always been a priority for organisations, our new digital landscape has redefined its meaning and its importance.

Working habits and IT business structures have evolved to include mobile working, shadow IT, unimaginable amounts of data and complex technological advancements that need a certain skillset to deploy. Therefore, it is impossible to view everything simultaneously and manage all resources accordingly, unless you deploy the correct tools and have the right strategy in place.

Capacity management should be a key element of any business strategy. It’s a model built for your business’ resourcing needs, both today and in the future.

 

Sourced by Dean Mitchell, director- Managed Services Practice at Logicalis UK

 

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Nick Ismail

Nick Ismail is the editor for Information Age. He has a particular interest in smart technologies, AI and cyber security.

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