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EMA’s Guide to App-Centric Infrastructure Performance Management

By Len Rosenthal, CMO

emaIf you’re familiar with Virtual Instruments to any degree, you know that our focus is providing enterprises with comprehensive application-centric infrastructure performance management (IPM) solutions. And while we do our very best to clearly explain to our customers and partners what app-centric IPM is and the benefits it provides, it’s always instructive to have an independent third party lend their perspective – and there are few organizations with more of an informed and authoritative voice on enterprise IT management technology than Enterprise Management Associates (EMA).

In EMA’s latest white paper, A Strategic Guide to Application-Centric Infrastructure Performance Management, analysts Steve Brasen and Julie Craig provide an in-depth overview of app-centric IPM for the uninitiated. But before we dive into the specifics, it’s important to set the stage for why organizations are seeking app-centric IPM solutions.

The short answer is that enterprises’ IT environments – and the apps that run on them – have become so complex that silo-centric monitoring solutions don’t give the full picture these organizations’ IT teams need to keep the business running. The longer version is best explained by EMA, and we’ll paraphrase it here:

  • Maintaining and managing these environments requires the collective expertise of a wide range of developers, technology specialists, and IT operations personnel, but each role typically sees end-to-end performance and availability through the lens of its own area of responsibility.
  • While silo-focused management tools can provide this visibility, the problem with this approach is that at the business level, the focus is on the application, not on the underlying elements supporting the application – which are just as critical as the applications themselves.
  • In this modern era of agile development, cloud-based delivery, containers, and microservices, many IT organizations are struggling with new requirements to improve the user experience by effectively managing applications in the context of the infrastructure supporting them.
  • As a result, IT organizations need tools capable of helping them evolve from silo-focused to application-focused management techniques designed to transform groups of diverse technology silo experts into cross-functional application support teams.

This is where app-centric IPM comes in, because unlike silo-specific tools, app-centric IPM can detect changing workload behavior in the context of the application, identifying infrastructure contention and potential problems before users are affected. But why is it important to monitor IT environments in the context of the application? According to EMA, “This approach fundamentally changes the role of IT management from principally engaging in reactive ‘firefighting’ to enabling proactive problem prevention.”

This proactivity is key, because it can lead directly to performance improvements and cost reductions. At the same time, app-centric IPM enables IT teams to measure and guarantee performance-based SLAs, which increases the value of the infrastructure – and this additional ROI delivers even more cost savings.

Reduced costs: that’s something that everyone – from the IT admin to the business user to the CEO – can understand.

We highly recommend you read the white paper to gain a full understanding of why app-centric IPM matters in today’s era of highly complex IT environments. And if you want to hear more about what app-centric IPM can do for your organization, drop us a line or let’s connect on Twitter.