Read the series introduction here
Trend #9 – Automation
Where’s mom? Management tool developers have promised a manager of managers (MoM) for more than a decade. MoM would “automate and integrate intensive day-to-day and tactical processes.”
Automation remains a top priority. But Gartner explains that MoM has evolved into a new form: “run book automation” (RBA). Run books once contained documentation of mainframe operational processes.
Though Gartner expects RBA to take about another two years to mature, the wait sounds worth it. Look for RBA capabilities to:
- design, build, orchestrate, administer and report IT operations workflows
- cross all management disciplines
- interact with all types of IT infrastructure elements
- provide an orchestration interface to design, administer and monitor processes
While RBA isn’t here yet, it’s definitely not too soon for network managers to deal with it.
Gartner recommends planning for RBA, monitoring its evolution, and investing in management tools that lead to it.
Trend #10 – Cloud Computing
To deliver on the promise of cloud computing, IT must provide “a rich set of network services to a broad set of applications and services.” Garter has identified a set of cloud network options, along with their application service characteristics and use cases.
For example, applications running over the public Internet option (such as consumer-facing applications) must be ubiquitous and low cost yet not necessarily consistent in high performance, especially when delivered globally.
But an application running over the private site-to-site delivery option (such as core business-critical applications) calls for strong SLAs, consistent performance, and lowest latency, among other application service characteristics.
To mitigate latency issues, Gartner recommends the use of application delivery controllers (ADCs) and WAN optimization controllers (WOCs) – along with direct interconnection of networks, such as a secure gateway between MPLS and the Internet.
Gartner’s summary recommendation: “Network managers should test or emulate the performance of cloud-based applications in all geographies where they plan to deploy them.”
This concludes our summaries of Gartner’s RAS Core Research Note “Network Managers’ 10 Most-Challenging I&O Trends.” Read the full report here