Business Service Management
(BSM) is a process, a mindset, not a product
(as Peter Armstrong
would say) so it is not a technology in the first place. It is strategic, however, so let's take a quick look at each of Gartner's choices and ask: "What has this got to do with BSM?"
Gartner's Top 10 Strategic Technologies for 2010My two cents: Managing cloud services demands that companies must have a BSM strategy which can monitor and manage the physical datacenter, virtualization, and the cloud - whether it be public, private, or hybrid. We need ITIL in the Cloud and robust Cloud Service SLAs.
Cloud Computing. Cloud computing
is a style of computing that characterizes a model in which providers
deliver a variety of IT-enabled capabilities to consumers. Cloud-based
services can be exploited in a variety of ways to develop an
application or a solution. Using cloud resources does not eliminate the
costs of IT solutions, but does re-arrange some and reduce others. In
addition, consuming cloud services enterprises will increasingly act as
cloud providers and deliver application, information or business
process services to customers and business partners.
Advanced Analytics. Optimization
and simulation is using analytical tools and models to maximize
business process and decision effectiveness by examining alternative
outcomes and scenarios, before, during and after process implementation
and execution. This can be viewed as a third step in supporting
operational business decisions. Fixed rules and prepared policies gave
way to more informed decisions powered by the right information
delivered at the right time, whether through customer relationship
management (CRM) or enterprise resource planning (ERP) or other
applications. The new step is to provide simulation, prediction,
optimization and other analytics, not simply information, to empower
even more decision flexibility at the time and place of every business
process action. The new step looks into the future, predicting what can
or will happen.
My two cents: OK, so now we know how to compete on analytics. But the decision-making process is much more complex than most people expected. Analytics are fine, but what we need is refined insight and critical understanding. The Big Shift Index tells us about what we haven't thought about measuring yet! Where's BSM in all of this? Well, if your CRM and yoru ERP systems are mission-critical, then BSM ensures they deliver on their promise when you need it.
Client Computing. Virtualization
is bringing new ways of packaging client computing applications and
capabilities. As a result, the choice of a particular PC hardware
platform, and eventually the OS platform, becomes less critical.
Enterprises should proactively build a five to eight year strategic
client computing roadmap outlining an approach to device standards,
ownership and support; operating system and application selection,
deployment and update; and management and security plans to manage
My two cents: Anytime, anywhere, on any device. BSM must be an integral part of managing virtualization to avoid virtual sprawl, if nothing else. Of course there's the end-user experience that needs monitoring as well.
IT for Green. IT
can enable many green initiatives. The use of IT, particularly among
the white collar staff, can greatly enhance an enterprise's green
credentials. Common green initiatives include the use of e-documents,
reducing travel and teleworking. IT can also provide the analytic tools
that others in the enterprise may use to reduce energy consumption in
the transportation of goods or other carbon management activities.
My two cents: Virtualization and Cloud computing will help IT become greener faster, by reducing the datacenter footprint. And virtual collaboration can reduce carbon emissions. Isn't optimizing asset usage a BSM function?
Reshaping the Data Center. In
the past, design principles for data centers were simple: Figure out
what you have, estimate growth for 15 to 20 years, then build to suit.
Newly-built data centers often opened with huge areas of white floor
space, fully powered and backed by a uninterruptible power supply
(UPS), water-and air-cooled and mostly empty. However, costs are
actually lower if enterprises adopt a pod-based approach to data center
construction and expansion. If 9,000 square feet is expected to be
needed during the life of a data center, then design the site to
support it, but only build what's needed for five to seven years.
Cutting operating expenses, which are a nontrivial part of the overall
IT spend for most clients, frees up money to apply to other projects or
investments either in IT or in the business itself.
My two cents: See previous two cents <<
Social Computing. Workers
do not want two distinct environments to support their work - one for
their own work products (whether personal or group) and another for
accessing "external" information. Enterprises must focus both on use of
social software and social media in the enterprise and participation
and integration with externally facing enterprise-sponsored and public
communities. Do not ignore the role of the social profile to bring
My two cents: Have you noticed that Twitter is having availability issues lately? I wonder if they use ITIL or BSM? Same story on Facebook. Maybe they use ITIL-Lite. There are unfortunately, some documented productivity issues with social computing, but we have an effective solution for improving knowledge-worker productivity.
Security - Activity Monitoring. Traditionally,
security has focused on putting up a perimeter fence to keep others
out, but it has evolved to monitoring activities and identifying
patterns that would have been missed before. Information security
professionals face the challenge of detecting malicious activity in a
constant stream of discrete events that are usually associated with an
authorized user and are generated from multiple network, system and
application sources. At the same time, security departments are facing
increasing demands for ever-greater log analysis and reporting to
support audit requirements. A variety of complimentary (and sometimes
overlapping) monitoring and analysis tools help enterprises better
detect and investigate suspicious activity - often with real-time
alerting or transaction intervention. By understanding the strengths
and weaknesses of these tools, enterprises can better understand how to
use them to defend the enterprise and meet audit requirements.
My two cents: See this survey on security management best practices.
Flash Memory. Flash memory is not new, but it is moving up to a new tier in the storage echelon.
Flash memory is a semiconductor memory device, familiar from its use in
USB memory sticks and digital camera cards. It is much faster than
rotating disk, but considerably more expensive, however this
differential is shrinking. At the rate of price declines, the
technology will enjoy more than a 100 percent compound annual growth
rate during the new few years and become strategic in many IT areas
including consumer devices, entertainment equipment and other embedded
IT systems. In addition, it offers a new layer of the storage hierarchy
in servers and client computers that has key advantages including
space, heat, performance and ruggedness.
My two cents: Wrong? We're going to see cloud storage take over this area, and it may or may not use flash memory.
Virtualization for Availability. Virtualization
has been on the list of top strategic technologies in previous years.
It is on the list this year because Gartner emphases new elements such
as live migration for availability that have longer term implications.
Live migration is the movement of a running virtual machine (VM), while
its operating system and other software continue to execute as if they
remained on the original physical server. This takes place by
replicating the state of physical memory between the source and
destination VMs, then, at some instant in time, one instruction
finishes execution on the source machine and the next instruction
begins on the destination machine.
However, if replication of memory continues
indefinitely, but execution of instructions remains on the source VM,
and then the source VM fails the next instruction would now place on
the destination machine. If the destination VM were to fail, just pick
a new destination to start the indefinite migration, thus making very
high availability possible.
The key value proposition is to displace a
variety of separate mechanisms with a single "dial" that can be set to
any level of availability from baseline to fault tolerance, all using a
common mechanism and permitting the settings to be changed rapidly as
needed. Expensive high-reliability hardware, with fail-over cluster
software and perhaps even fault-tolerant hardware could be dispensed
with, but still meet availability needs. This is key to cutting costs,
lowering complexity, as well as increasing agility as needs shift.
My two cents: Now this is a BSM play if there ever was one!
Mobile Applications. By
year-end 2010, 1.2 billion people will carry handsets capable of rich,
mobile commerce providing a rich environment for the convergence of
mobility and the Web. There are already many thousands of applications
for platforms such as the Apple iPhone, in spite of the limited market
and need for unique coding. It may take a newer version that is
designed to flexibly operate on both full PC and miniature systems, but
if the operating system interface and processor architecture were
identical, that enabling factor would create a huge turn upwards in
mobile application availability.
My two cents: Anytime, anywhere, on any device. Didn't I write about that a few seconds ago? And don't we need our CMDB to track all these diverse devices and apps?
As you can see, I've attached Business Service Management (BSM) as an enabling IT strategy for just about all ten of Gartner's Strategic Technologies for 2010. And of course if it's a service provided by IT or even an external service provider, we're still going to need a Service Catalog for 2010. More on that in a later post.
Israel, where do agile practices fit into this? Just about everywhere as well?