Having visibility and clear insights on your technology estate is crucial to achieve strategic planning, says Philip Hogan, founder and CEO of Tiberone
Business leaders strive to set the vision. They must generate the strategy, and guide their organisations in operating, delivering, disrupting and transforming, weathering the storms and sharing the success. Complex technology structures underpin all business. Software, hardware, cloud, SaaS, compute, network, storage, security, user interface, systems integration, are different facets of the technologies that support the processes, transactions and fulfilment that are part of everyday life.
Visibility and insight on the technology estate is key, but the scale, complexity and the fragmented nature of the estate impacts clarity and the ability of business leaders to operate and transform effectively. Maintaining quality of service, performance, responsiveness, and availability of services can account for most of the operational costs within a business.
Adapting to evolving customer needs and proactively driving new products and features requires agility and ability to implement change securely and at speed.
Maintaining strong compliance across the various technology layers, ensuring adherence to regulatory, industry and internal policies is a key corporate goal and board level concern. A significant example of this is the Telecoms Security Act, being implemented in the UK, to bolster the protection of critical national infrastructure. Many EU governments aim to implement similar regulations.
Transformation, evolution, mergers and acquisitions necessitate change across the business and the supporting technology estate. Striving to achieve and maintain competitive edge, or simply surviving in challenging times, requires varying degrees of transformation – it’s necessary, but never easy.
Achieving maximum oversight
So, how do you achieve the visibility, clarity and insights into the technology estate? Most of the raw data is already available in existing tooling. Provisioning, monitoring, service management, asset management and cloud control systems contain most of the required data, but it is dispersed and most likely of variable quality.
The phrase “data is the new oil” may have some truth to it, but the data also needs to be discovered, extracted, and refined. Quality of data needs to be driven in an efficient and sustainable manner. Modelling of the data needs to support specific strategic goals.
In all corporations, technology management tooling is implemented with varying degrees of maturity. Typically, it addresses specific technical needs on specific parts of the technology estate, for example, patching for servers, software provisioning to laptops, workload distribution on the cloud.
Rarely is there a centralised view to support the strategic decision making. Individual IT operations tools have their propriety data models and standard features, geared towards service management, licence management, financial control, and other purposes. Some vendors offer the possibility to span several domains, but the specialisations demanded by each domain is not uniformly supported by single tools. Therefore, multiple tools are present, but there has been no single pane of glass through which to see all. Until now that is.
VISO Asset Intelligence
At Tiberone, our aim with VISO Asset Intelligence is to overcome these challenges and provide business leaders with effective maps of their technology estates on which to define the path to the strategic goals. We are uniquely positioned with extensive knowledge, experience and partnerships to tackle this. Our background is service management tooling, so we know in depth how to integrate with the various vendors. For the last fifteen years we have built expertise in asset, configuration, and service modelling. Recently we have been working with a leading European university to prototype machine learning for the standardisation, reconciliation, and correlation of data to support several use-cases, including lifecycle management, security event triage, audit, and compliance. We also are working with partners on sustainability within the technology estate, eliminating in some cases, up to 30% on energy consumption and operating costs by right-sizing.
Lifecycle management is a use-case which supports several objectives, including quality of service, security, cloud migration, and vendor consolidation.
The main objectives are to ensure that all technology infrastructure is currently supported, risks are assessed, and obsolescence planned. Data for operating system and software component versions that are running in the environment is readily available through provisioning and discovery tools. Rich catalogue datasets showing end-of-service-life dates are available. Upgrade paths for infrastructure components are provided by vendors.
However, the complex interdependencies of application components is not so easy to understand without application or service modelling, as well as the human accountability for platform ownership, operation, and architecture. Assessing the risk of noncompliance and planning the mitigation is complex. The model and the data must support the objectives of the strategy. VISO Asset Intelligence focuses on the characteristics of the technology estate that are needed to support these objectives, correlating across multiple repositories to present the unified view.
Identifying and mitigating data quality issues is also critical for ensuring reliability of the information supporting strategic decision making. Using machine learning, we have trained the data processing engine to remediate issues, both in an automated and semiautomated manner. There are some extremely well-curated, third-party reference catalogues available to support this. We also build reference catalogues from the estate data and apply curation and governance processes. VISO Asset Intelligence includes capabilities and automation to support sustainable data quality management, including quality indicators and insights.
Leaders need reliable data to support their strategic planning. Having visibility and clear insights on the technology estate is crucial. Existing operational data can be harnessed, modelled, governed, and correlated with industry reference data to provide this visibility and clarity. VISO Asset Intelligence is where the maps are drawn, and where your IT is unleashed.
Tiberone specialises in IT service management, helping customers – that operate some of the largest technology estates globally – assure high quality of service, achieve compliance, and transform securely. Across sectors including telecommunications, finance, retail, energy, automotive, and pharmaceutical, Tiberone collaborates with many vendors and systems integrators, focusing our extensive expertise on delivering excellent outcomes.