The evolution of the way of doing business in Industry 4.0 is putting the IT operations teams in an extreme situation. The devices to monitor and control every day are greater, they mix; technologies, protocols and hybrid environments (cloud & on premise) including IoT and huge amounts of very heterogeneous information to be treated. All of this while maintaining a high degree of adaptability and agility, but also ensuring the correct stability and high levels of performance without misleading the correct control of costs. The demand of the business is diverse complex and the participation of IT in it is vital to not lose growth or quota in a more demanding market every day.
For IT operations, the solution is not to abandon one objective to focus on another, it is to do more with less and also offer greater benefits and value to the business, including competitive advantages that differentiate the organization from its competitors thanks to a different way of using technology and/or processes. The traditional paradigms no longer work, let's review what the current environment implies in this area: ITOM & ITIM, "Cloudification", "Containerization", AI, Cybersecurity, AIOps, etc.
ITOM & ITIM
Although it is necessary to separate ITIM as a specialized area of IT infrastructure monitoring (metrics of availability and use of components) and ITOM as an associated area for the management of IT operations (functions of maintenance and decision making), it really is very difficult to design global or partial solutions in one area without evaluating the impact on the other. This is something that must be taken into account when dealing with new solutions if we want to be successful.
The Continuous Adoption of the "Cloud" - "Cloudification":
Although this surprises us less every day it is important to keep in mind, as it complicates Operation IT, the cloud continues and will continue to grow, many IT operations are now running in the cloud. The real environment of a typical organization will remain hybrid. It even begins to have availability already in the cloud of high performance environments. Gartner predicts that, by 2020, only 20% of a company workload will remain on premise.
It is already irrefutable that the management of a combination of private cloud, virtualization and public cloud platforms will pose new challenges to IT operations, from a cost perspective, but also from the management itself. This will bring many problems in the areas of end-to-end performance monitoring, root cause analysis and general system maintenance. When the entire IT implementation is in your own data center, it is comparatively easier to find out exactly where the performance problems exist. But, with multiple entities involved in a hybrid IT environment, this becomes much more complicated.
This is where the need for unique control arises and is where ITOM (+ ITIM) provides the necessary value and allows this to be transparent for the IT operation and does not pose a problem for the business.
Application containers - "Containerization"
The application container segment is expected to grow from $762 million in 2016 to $2.7 billion by 2020.
Since "Containerization" appeared on the scene it has been evolving technology promises to significantly transform the way in which IT operations are carried out for this new concept. Application containers are highly scalable and transient entities that allow new forms of agile application development. They provide the shareable and reusable micro services that can be run on physical systems or VMS.
As more and more application developers embrace containers as a main tool for development, it will be equally vital that infrastructure be provided on the one hand, but also on the other, the support of operations necessary to implement and manage their applications based in containers. While application containers promise rapid scaling, flexibility and ease of use, your arrival at the data center can be detrimental if our IT operations systems and equipment are not ready.
A typical container lasts only a few milliseconds, compared to a physical server that can last for years, or a virtual machine that can run for weeks or months. The highly scalable and transient nature of containers requires much more detailed control over workload management, such as automation and orchestration. IT operations managers should consider how they affect server capacity.
Most of the current dominant interfaces are GUI-based in comparison with what this implies and should evolve to API-based that must also reach the area of direct interaction with the end user to allow exchanges between devices every day more diverse (IoT). Without an open interface and common standards, we spend a lot of time building interfaces and connections between systems. With APIs the connections are automated, the APIs help to transform the tasks that human beings perform interacting with their devices or even IoT in tasks that applications can treat automatically.
Artificial Intelligence (AI)
To support and complement the previous point but also as an element of great impact appears artificial intelligence. Rapid advances in technologies such as "machine learning" and "deep learning" are increasing the capabilities of AI.
As I have already mentioned, this new complex IT Operations scenario is logically also a generator of an impressive volume of data. This is where AI will help its analytics and make decisions in areas such as log analysis, infrastructure scaling, planning of capacity, etc.
We have spoken of diversity of devices, of communication between them and of enormous quantities of any information of a confidential nature. We cannot ignore that a new and important component of the ITOM platforms is the incorporation of cybersecurity methods and solutions focused on the management of software vulnerabilities, and it will continue to expand but so will the vulnerability of hardware. Security must now focus on absolutely everything, being therefore essential to have the best help for it within our ITOM solutions.
Algorithmic IT Operations (AIOps)
Until now the treatment of all this aforementioned volume of data and heterogeneous information was limited to the supervision and the analysis only centered in the data denominated "Analysis of operations of TI" (ITOA). Today this is evolving towards a treatment of this information for decision making and execution of tasks with greater precision. From recommending the best decisions to even performing tasks in an automated way but also predicting needs. AIOps promises to completely remodel ITOM.
As we can see we are at a time where every day more dynamic and exciting. It also promises to remain so for a long time and that will force us to a continuous evolution and a feeling of daily juggling to which the IT Operations area will not be alien but one of the main enablers and protagonists. ITOM solutions increasingly global and integrated will be necessary to be up to this new paradigm that opens up in the IT administration and operation services.