Stopping IT Outages and Downtime

(Up to date: 08-02-2024)

As companies proceed to embrace digital transformation, availability has turn into an organization’s Most worthy commodity. Availability refers back to the state of when a company’s IT infrastructure, which is important to working a profitable enterprise, is functioning correctly. Nonetheless, when a company experiences an inflow in demand or one other catastrophic IT challenge, availability subsides and downtime happens at an alarming charge. One of many greatest challenges organizations face is that availability is troublesome to keep up and is indiscriminate, even for the world’s largest enterprises.

Firms like British Airways, Fb and Twitter have all battled by way of costly outages lately that not solely affect their companies, but additionally expose society’s rising dependence on know-how to carry out key features of our each day wants. As know-how continues to advance, IT outages will proceed to ensue and can have an effect on extra than simply a company’s backside line.

Downtime continues to be a serious challenge

Outages happen when a company’s companies or techniques are unavailable, whereas brownouts are when a company’s companies stay obtainable however usually are not working at an optimum stage. In keeping with a LogicMonitor survey of IT decision-makers within the US, Canada, UK, Australia and New Zealand, 96 % of respondents mentioned they skilled at the least one outage previously three years.

A median of fifty % of respondents within the US, Canada and UK mentioned they skilled 5 or extra outages previously three years. Roughly 50 % of US, Canada and UK respondents mentioned they’d skilled 4 or fewer outages in the identical timeframe.

Stopping IT downtime is essential for sustaining productiveness and making certain clean operations inside a company.

Listed here are the ten methods to assist reduce and stop IT downtime:

  1. Common System Upkeep: Implement a proactive upkeep schedule for servers, networks, and {hardware} to establish and handle potential points earlier than they escalate.
  2. Redundancy and Backup: Arrange redundant techniques, {hardware}, and information backups to offer failover choices in case of {hardware} or software program failures.
  3. Monitoring and Alerts: Make the most of monitoring instruments to repeatedly observe system efficiency and obtain real-time alerts when potential points come up.
  4. Patch Administration: Keep up-to-date with software program patches and safety updates to mitigate vulnerabilities and scale back the danger of system failures.
  5. Load Balancing: Distribute community visitors throughout a number of servers to make sure even workloads and keep away from overloading any single system.
  6. Catastrophe Restoration Plan: Create a complete catastrophe restoration plan that outlines the steps to be taken within the occasion of a serious system failure or information loss.
  7. Testing and Simulation: Usually take a look at catastrophe restoration procedures and simulate potential failure eventualities to validate the effectiveness of the restoration plan.
  8. Worker Coaching: Educate workers about IT greatest practices, comparable to avoiding suspicious hyperlinks and attachments, to cut back the danger of cyber-attacks that may result in downtime.
  9. Vendor Assist and Upkeep Contracts: Be certain that important techniques have energetic help and upkeep contracts with distributors to obtain well timed help in case of points.
  10. Steady Enchancment and Documentation: Usually overview and replace IT insurance policies and procedures primarily based on classes discovered from previous incidents, and doc them to facilitate constant practices.

Keep in mind, no system is fully resistant to downtime, however by following these preventive measures and having a sturdy catastrophe restoration plan, you’ll be able to considerably scale back the affect of potential IT downtime in your group.

Logic Monitor

An outage can affect extra than simply a company’s funds. The survey discovered organizations that skilled frequent outages and brownouts incurred greater prices – as much as 16-times greater than corporations who had fewer situations of downtime. Past the monetary affect, these organizations needed to double the scale of their groups to troubleshoot issues, and it nonetheless took them twice as lengthy on common to resolve them.

The industries most affected

Outcomes from the survey additionally revealed that the frequency of outages and brownouts is conducive to the business by which the corporate operates. Monetary and know-how organizations skilled outages and brownouts most ceaselessly throughout a 3 yr interval, adopted by retail and manufacturing. In keeping with the survey:

  • 41 % of respondents from monetary organizations acknowledged that they skilled 10 or extra outages over the previous three years.
  • 37 % of respondents from know-how organizations mentioned they skilled 10 or extra outages over the previous three years.
  • 34 % of respondents from retail organizations acknowledged that they skilled 10 or extra outages over the previous three years.
  • 28 % of respondents from manufacturing organizations acknowledged that they skilled 10 or extra outages over the previous three years.

These numbers spotlight the sweeping nature of outages throughout the assorted business sectors and show that no firm ought to think about itself immune.

The significance of availability

Availability issues not solely to a company’s clients, but additionally to the IT decision-makers tasked with sustaining it. The truth is, 80 % of world respondents indicated that efficiency and availability are essential points, rating above safety and cost-effectiveness. In spite of everything, IT availability is crucial within the clean operating of IT infrastructure and subsequently essential to sustaining enterprise operations. Availability ensures that airline passengers, for instance, aren’t stranded on account of system outages, meals stays at secure temperatures and clients can entry their on-line banking purposes.

Regardless of the significance of availability, IT decision-makers indicated that 51 % of outages and 53 % of brownouts are avoidable. Which means organizations may forestall this expensive downtime, however don’t have the means mandatory – whether or not that includes instruments, groups or different assets – to keep away from it.

Considerations over the repercussions

With high-profile outages and brownouts hitting the headlines frequently, considerations over the repercussions of experiencing downtime are inevitable. Within the US and Canada, 50 % of respondents mentioned they are going to probably expertise a serious brownout or outage so extreme that it’ll generate media consideration. Of the identical respondents, 52 % worry somebody will lose his or her job.

The sector that feared the repercussions of downtime probably the most was retail, adopted by manufacturing. 68 % of respondents working in retail felt that they’d expertise a serious brownout or outage so extreme that it will make nationwide media protection and that somebody may lose his or her job. 67 % of IT decision-makers in manufacturing felt it will make nationwide protection, whereas 69 % have been involved somebody would lose his or her job.

Complete monitoring is essential

To fight downtime, it’s important that corporations have a complete monitoring platform that permits them to view their IT infrastructure by way of a single glass panel. This implies potential causes of downtime are extra simply recognized and resolved earlier than they’ll negatively affect the enterprise. Such a visibility is invaluable, permitting organizations to focus much less on problem-solving and extra on optimization and innovation.

Evaluating monitoring options will be an arduous however mandatory process, and the significance of extensibility can’t be overstated. Firms should be certain that the chosen platform integrates effectively with all of its IT techniques and may establish and handle gaps in an organization’s infrastructure that may trigger outages. It is usually crucial that the chosen monitoring answer just isn’t solely versatile, but additionally offers IT groups early visibility into traits that might signify bother forward. Taking it a step additional, clever monitoring options that use AIOps performance like machine studying and synthetic intelligence can detect the warning indicators that precede points and warn organizations accordingly.

In the end, whether or not adopting new applied sciences or transferring infrastructure to the cloud, enterprises should be sure that availability is prime of thoughts, and that their monitoring answer is ready to sustain. By deciding on a scalable platform that gives visibility into their techniques and forecasts potential points, companies can rise to the following stage with out sacrificing availability. Such a visibility is not going to solely forestall downtime and system outages, but additionally preserve organizations from hitting undesirable headlines.

By Daniela Streng