Recent talks of an economic softening have left IT leaders concerned about the future of their enterprises. That concern is understandable — tech layoffs create near-daily headlines at this point, with top companies rolling back their operations and rolling up their sleeves to focus on mission-critical expenses. And for many in ITOps, that means cutting tools.
Auditing a tech stack for superfluous or duplicate features is helpful, as tool sprawl is a risk to cost efficiency for just about every organization. To guide a strategic consolidation process, IT leaders should consider which tools provide meaningful and actionable insights (without expending the critical time of technicians). Oftentimes, solutions overlap — or, in other cases, the insights they provide do not track back to ROI in crucial areas like maintaining uptime and system performance.
Here’s how AIOps fulfills those essential functions — and more — during economic uncertainty.
Incident management goes beyond the tech stack
Many enterprise leaders view IT system event monitoring as a necessary business expense rather than a revenue opportunity. That is because traditional understandings of IT Ops involve back-office operations to keep mission-critical systems afloat, which includes people, processes and technology. In other words, many leaders regard IT service management (ITSM) and event management as deeply embedded capital infrastructure. But there is more to it.
Our modern business landscape has changed dramatically since IT first rose in prominence (think the ‘80s and ‘90s). For starters, digital transformation has accelerated rapidly, leaving many vendor-client relationships entirely digital. As a result, IT infrastructure has become far more complex — and critical. Internal and consumer-facing systems handle an array of new data streams, not to mention a higher overall volume of metrics, logs and events. Now, IT teams are tasked with maintaining fundamental internal systems and ensuring uptime for revenue-generating interfaces like e-commerce platforms.
That is where AIOps tools come into play. AIOps solutions untangle the mess of incidents by escalating issues to the appropriate parties and eradicating non-relevant alerts. Internally, AIOps solutions declutter event management and allow IT teams strategic insights in guiding them to reduce technical debt. And for consumer-facing systems, AIOps tools ensure more uptime, giving consumers 24/7 access to an organization’s products and services. Just as important, AIOps-provided outage and availability insights become available before customer complaints arise.
Although consistently important, system uptime — and the revenue it safeguards — becomes even more critical during an economic softening. Consider that more than 60% of the world’s GDP is digitized, and organizations that neglect to build proper infrastructure will eventually lose out.
The economics behind AIOps and reduced MTTX
Let us unpack the inherent ROI of AIOps: reduced mean time to detect (MTTD) and mean time to recover (MTTR). Together, these measurements — MTTX — can indicate the strength of a system’s data infrastructure.
Now, an example to illustrate the importance of low MTTX. Say a large retail organization experiences an outage on Monday at 9:30 a.m. During that outage, the organization’s physical and e-commerce sales platforms go dark worldwide, making it impossible for customers to check out. Because this organization employs good data practices and has previously deployed AIOps, its systems swiftly identify and escalate the issue to the appropriate technician. As a result of this expedited workflow, the organization’s systems return online at 9:31 a.m. An organization experiencing tool sprawl and fragmented data infrastructure, on the other hand, will likely have longer MTTX — their systems will remain offline until 11:30 a.m. as human technicians search for error context and origin. The 119 minutes of downtime could cost the business more than $2.6 million at $22,000 per minute, according to Forbes.
Clearly, lower MTTX translates to fewer costs from extended downtime. However, treating MTTD and MTTR as representative of the same underlying issues is a mistake because their identification processes differ significantly.
MTTD involves a three-step process in which technicians must identify whether an incident is underway, the nature of the incident and the causes of the incident. Given tool sprawl, before Moogsoft, we have heard that these investigations can include more than 300 people. MTTR kicks in when technicians start communicating the incident’s nature and cause to the appropriate parties and executing a response. All five steps of MTTX are crucial. Therefore, reducing one aspect of MTTD over another will not help in the long run. IT and DevOps teams must consider the entire incident lifecycle — this is where AIOps tools excel.
In isolation, MTTX reduction requires a dedicated team. AIOps solutions simplify the process by identifying and escalating issues across all five classic telemetry points. And once these solutions are deployed, economic returns begin. Expedited data ingestion and correlation leave DevOps teams with context-rich event tickets — and fewer tickets overall, leading to less time wasted on repetitive incident resolution. As a result, technicians can finally cut down on monitoring and have time to focus on revenue-generating responsibilities. This is especially critical given recessionary pressures like the extended tech talent crunch, which has left many IT and DevOps teams understaffed and overworked.
Now is the time to strengthen observability measures
Economic fragility may convince some leaders to pause tool adoption. However, not all tools are created equally — not even all AIOps solutions are created equally. Leading AIOps tools like Moogsoft excel because they rely on AI and machine learning (ML) instead of logic-based algorithms (or the old rules-based architecture). Moogsoft’s AIOps solution adapts to the modern IT infrastructure landscape and allows DevOps teams to create efficiency with IT operations to focus on high-impact initiatives and revenue-based opportunities.
Leaders should keep this in mind as they review their existing tech stakes and determine which deliver meaningful value. A good rule of thumb is to prioritize solutions that not only provide data but also interpret and act on data. These functionalities will prove especially valuable in the challenging months ahead.