Excel has long been the weapon of choice for data analysts. When managing structured data in the past, the user was in control. They could quickly generate models and graphical representations of their data and share these throughout the organization. Simply put – an effective, convenient and simple tool for what was required – but this simple tool came with serious baggage.
In the past the Excel spreadsheet was used by even the most advanced capacity planners. It was however prone to error and typically involved a tedious process of trying to pull together information from multiple diverse sources. The output was unlikely to be a version controlled and seldom considered the single source of truth.
It would likely have taken numerous analysts weeks of effort to aggregate, unify and chart the data. As spreadsheets were personal to the individual it also gave the illusion of a repeatable process whilst being little more than a template, creating single points of failure within an organization if key staff were unavailable.
Spreadsheets could deliver the information needed to form a current usage view of an IT estate and instil a degree of confidence that foreseeable demand could be met. The only caveat was, these decisions were based largely on guesswork and ‘educated guesses’ of the capacity managers. This is simply not enough anymore – poor IT capacity planning has led to many high profile outages and IT downtime affecting not only their customers but their reputations.
What has changed?
The increasingly complex, virtual and hybrid environments has made it very difficult for IT operations managers to manage their IT estates and adequately plan for the future.
Operation’s size and scale have increased significantly and there is a distinct need for automated data collection and analysis. The number of options and interactions between the applications and services running in your environment has exponentially increased.
When capacity planning the usual constraints of CPU, Memory and Storage have been made even more challenging by hybrid environments, data regulations, power users and server affinities.
If you are still relying on excel spreadsheets, you are unfortunately leaving yourself vulnerable.
Why gamble when you have a sure bet?
The days of guesswork and finger in the air estimations are gone – in the age when data is bountiful, decisions should be made by quantifiable insight. A new breed of IT capacity planning tooling and a scientific approach to capacity management, based on facts, is essential to meet their business objectives and plan future demand.
This is where the application of advanced IT Operational Analytics to IT capacity planning can help. By taking an analytical and proactive approach to IT capacity planning based on underlying utilization data from across physical and virtual environments, Sumerian’s CPaaS can demonstrate a unified view of your IT estate.
Modelling the impact of growth or a technology refresh on your environment? Sumerian’s CPaaS can confidently demonstrate the impact within seconds and pinpoint exactly when additional resource will be required. Further validate and test the hardware recommendations, ensuring an optimized IT estate that supports future growth and allows you to administer capital investment at the right time.
If you are an organization that needs to provide highly available, robust and reliable services, can you afford to walk into the future blindfolded?
Start basing your capacity planning decisions on facts – kill the spreadsheet.
If you are still using excel spreadsheets for capacity planning and would like to learn how to improve your IT capacity planning process and plan future demand, then register for our ‘Ditch the Spreadsheets – Time to excel at IT capacity planning’ webinar with Stuart Higgins Sumerian, Sumerian Technical Evangelist.