ITOps at Work: Building a Modern IT Monitoring House for 2021

If 2020 was a rocky year that made you think, “Let’s do things better next year,” here’s an interesting project for 2021: building a modern IT monitoring house. As IT monitoring pursues its transformation to become Smart Monitoring—or modern monitoring, ITOps need to put in place their own robust infrastructure so they can better manage IT complexity, eliminate frustrations, and collaborate with the entire IT crew and more. This Q&A post delivers the blueprint to building a modern monitoring platform. It defines the three basic capabilities your organization needs to manage IT complexity and win in a market that competes on digital experiences. Don’t reach for the measuring tape just yet, use our Smart Monitoring Maturity Assessment tool to measure the extent of your current modern monitoring abilities.

What Is Smart Monitoring?

Smart Monitoring, aka Modern Monitoring, is the evolution of IT monitoring, in synch with the digital transformation of organizations. If rapid technological changes pose a challenge for ITOps, Smart Monitoring is an answer to all the complexity.

Why will Smart Monitoring be so important in 2021?

Major trends are converging which will take human capacity to manage IT complexity to its extreme limit. Think of the pandemic which has intensified our reliance on IT—from producing and delivering goods to serving customers in a contactless economy.

Add the progression towards AI-assisted everything which calls for increased computing and data processing powers. Think of connected objects (IoT) such as drones, smart devices, robotized equipment, in 5-G enabled, ultraconnected environments. Consider some lasting impacts of the COVID19 epidemic: the multiplication of home-based digital workplaces and the intensification of digital commerce. More than ever in 2021 work will happen where IT infrastructure, smart objects and humans interconnect to create value. A specific set of capabilities are needed to watch over these complex interactions at the best cost and performance possible

What does modern IT monitoring enable exactly?

Modern Monitoring (Smart Monitoring) is the ability to maintain end-to-end vision on performance, from the deepest layers of an IT system, up to the top layer of an organization’s user-facing business services. By extension, Smart Monitoring refers to an integrated view of IT monitoring providing a common reference for both IT and business line managers, as SLAs are tracked and decisions are made, to add capacity or prioritize investments in order to sustain optimal business activity and ultimately, flawless digital experiences.

How do I design a modern IT monitoring platform?

Designing a modern IT monitoring platform is like building a house, layering the three essential capabilities of modern monitoring. Here’s how the modern monitoring house is layered: 

Ground floor. The cornerstone of modern IT monitoring is the ability to monitor IT from on premise up to the cloud and to the edge, embracing the internet of things (IoT), edge computing and multicloud environments in all their diversity. This open plan provides a holistic view and can be tightly integrated with a greater ITOps, SecOps and DevOps production environment—your neighbors. 

Second floor. The next level of modern IT monitoring is the ability to map IT infrastructure and operation priorities as they are connected to business needs, through contextually rich insights. Through being business aware, IT operations excellence can drive business performance and results.

Roof. This is where the modern IT monitoring house gets even more interesting in its design: there’s flexibility built-in so that the last layer can be pushed up as new infrastructure or technologies are adopted. In other words, the sky’s the limit. By being future ready, ITOps adapt to the constant evolution of a complex, distributed IT infrastructure, and the business stays agile as it competes on digital experience quality. This layer is self-improving through the actionable insights brought by domain-centric and domain-agnostic AIOps models.

Check where you stand in building your start monitoring platform.

3 statistics that prove we need to build smarter monitoring houses

  • Only 27% of surveyed ITOps rate the visibility over performance levels in their organization as excellent.
  • 90% believe that it is very or quite important that their IT team provides and shares business-oriented KPIs moving forward.
  • ITOps expect these technologies to most impact their IT Monitoring methods or practices over the next 2 years: IoT (54%), big data (48%), edge computing (44%), and AI (40%).  

Source: State of IT Monitoring, Centreon 2020.

Key Takeaway: IT monitoring maturity requires 3 capabilities

A modern IT monitoring platform is defined by three key capabilities: holistic visibility, or the ability to track workflows across the IT infrastructure mesh, business awareness or the ability to correlate IT monitoring insights to business performance KPIs, and future readiness, the ability to constantly update the monitoring configuration as new tech is adopted and to integrate the latest advancements of ML and AI capabilities as they become available. Assess your IT monitoring maturity here.