By: Arun Gandhi, Senior Supervisor of Product Advertising at Juniper Networks
While you’re making an attempt to persuade corporations to modernize, it will probably appear to be you’re shouting into the void. Positive, they perceive that what you’re advocating is essential, however understanding you need to do one thing and really doing it are two various things.
This has been the story round knowledge heart community automation for the final a number of years.
Everyone knows that knowledge facilities have turn into extra advanced and significant to most companies. So, discovering a approach to allow extra agile and environment friendly operations must be on each firm’s to-do checklist. But, even with organizations that might profit most from automation — communication service suppliers (CSPs) and enterprises managing giant, distributed knowledge facilities — precise implementation has been sluggish. Thankfully, we appear to be turning a nook.
Earlier this 12 months, Enterprise Administration Associates (EMA) surveyed tons of of IT leaders throughout america and Europe, representing corporations of various sizes and industries. Almost all agreed that knowledge heart community automation can enhance operational effectivity, cut back safety threat, enhance compliance, and enhance digital agility. Almost 9 out of 10 organizations plan to spice up their funding in automation instruments over the subsequent two years. But, the outcomes weren’t all constructive. In the case of the automation methods they’re pursuing, almost 77% of expertise professionals see actual room for enchancment.
What do IT organizations hope to achieve from knowledge heart community automation, and what boundaries stand in the way in which? Right here’s what the oldsters within the trenches are saying.
Recognizing the necessity to automate
EMA surveyed 359 expertise professionals engaged in knowledge heart community automation methods, starting from front-line community engineers to C-level executives. One overarching message was clear: IT leaders might not have purchased into the advantages of knowledge heart community automation prior to now, however they’ve huge expectations for it now.
Greater than 40% of these surveyed consider automation will enhance operational effectivity and cut back reliance on guide duties of their knowledge heart operations. Multiple third count on automation to scale back safety and compliance dangers, and almost as many count on it to extend agility, improve resiliency, and speed up their group’s response to community points.
Key Advantages Anticipated from Knowledge Middle Community Automation
Simply as encouraging, most organizations aren’t simply speaking about automation, they’re really doing it. Almost 9 out of 10 professionals surveyed say their group will enhance price range for knowledge heart community automation over the subsequent two years, and 35% count on that enhance to be important. They’re additionally assured these investments will ship outcomes. Greater than half count on automation to pay for itself inside two years and 37.5% count on to see a return on funding (ROI) inside three years.
Based mostly on these outcomes, we should always assume we’re on the cusp of agile, automated knowledge heart networks turning into the norm for nearly each enterprise, proper? Nicely, not so quick. Regardless of actual motion on this house, automation distributors nonetheless have work to do. Topping the checklist: decreasing confusion across the sheer variety of instruments in the marketplace.
Greater than 98% of IT leaders mentioned they’re utilizing automation instruments from a vendor, not simply particular person scripts. That’s a giant deal, as scripting has lengthy been the default for accelerating primary community administration duties — and has confirmed not scalable for contemporary distributed knowledge facilities. However, relating to which instruments they need to select, survey respondents usually had extra questions than solutions.
EMA famous a typical state of affairs for distributors on this house: A vendor will introduce a software that automates one kind of activity, comparable to configuration adjustments however doesn’t tackle different components of the lifecycle, like community design and assurance. Later, that vendor will broaden into these areas and rebrand. IT leaders find yourself with extra automation choices than ever earlier than but in addition elevated confusion about which software does what.
Almost half of these surveyed mentioned they use two completely different community automation instruments and greater than a 3rd use three or extra. That’s on prime of the homegrown automation software program utilized by 93% of organizations. This fragmentation can enhance operational complexity, whilst organizations try to scale back it. One survey respondent with a $25 billion international enterprise mentioned, “We had 5 completely different automation instruments that we must replace. So, it used to take me 5 – 6 hours to get somefactor accomplished with automation.”
Moreover, “automation” isn’t at all times totally automated. Almost half of respondents mentioned that, even when utilizing automation, they nonetheless want to collect knowledge manually (by consulting spreadsheets or logging into units) earlier than making a change. Additional, 51% mentioned that guide data-gathering has a unfavourable influence on automation. Respondents additionally complained that, in lots of circumstances, vendor instruments aren’t versatile sufficient to assist their group’s distinctive knowledge heart structure or safety and compliance wants.
Assembly companies the place they’re
At Juniper Networks, we’ve been speaking about knowledge heart community automation for years, so we’re inspired to see so many organizations making actual investments on this house. We additionally perceive how difficult automation can get — and the way shortly organizations can discover themselves drowning in disparate vendor instruments. That’s why we’ve designed Juniper Apstra to offer a really common answer for knowledge heart community automation.
Not like some instruments, Apstra is:
- Multivendor by design: Apstra is designed from the bottom as much as automate heterogeneous knowledge facilities and eradicate the necessity to use completely different instruments for various components of the community.
- Intent-driven: Apstra abstracts away the complexity of large-scale knowledge heart networks. Customers can specific what they need at a excessive stage (comparable to provisioning assets or performing configuration adjustments) and Apstra routinely executes it. There is no such thing as a want for the consumer to be tied to the Command Line Interface (CLI) and vendor certifications.
- Dependable: The muse of reliability is consistency and repeatability. Customers can automate community deployment and operations by validated and repeatable designs, predictive evaluation, and proactive alerts of deviations. Apstra addresses all the community lifecycle, from design and implementation to accelerating on a regular basis operations with a single supply of reality, highly effective intent-based analytics and root-cause identification that empowers the consumer to pinpoint and resolve points shortly.
- Safe: With Apstra, a consumer can monitor the origin of community adjustments and guarantee granular enforcement the place wanted. Moreover, they’ll use intent-based coverage assurance, connectivity restrictions for multitenant environments and enhanced role-based entry management (RBAC) to create blueprint-specific roles.
In line with Tony Lott, Head of Capital Initiatives at Bloomberg, “Juniper’s Apstra answer offers us a single view into all the community — no matter our units, switches, working methods, or distributors. It has enabled us to achieve the Day-2 operations effectivity wanted to handle and maintain the advanced community infrastructure in our cutting-edge facility.”
With these and different capabilities, Apstra will help simplify and speed up knowledge heart operations with out including new layers of complexity.
Discover Out Extra
That is only a small pattern of what IT professionals are saying about automation. Obtain the EMA report to seek out:
- Ideas from CIOs and CTOs on main automation initiatives
- Greatest practices from organizations succeeding with automation
- And way more
For extra particulars on how Juniper will help you speed up your personal automation journey, go to the Juniper Apstra webpage.
Copyright © 2022 IDG Communications, Inc.
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