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    September 25, 2023

    Change Modeling: 5 Must-Have Capabilities for Your Workload Automation Solution

    Solving problems is great. Particularly if it’s a high-profile issue, dropping everything, responding quickly, applying fast thinking and expertise, and resolving the problem can be rewarding, and even feel a bit heroic.

    However, what’s even better is preventing problems from occurring in the first place. This is particularly true when it comes to the high-stakes domain of enterprise workload automation. When failures occur in enterprises’ production automation environments, the results can be catastrophic. Even minutes of downtime can translate to delays in the delivery of life-saving drugs, steep SLA breach penalties, and hundreds of thousands of dollars in revenue losses—and those are just the immediate repercussions. Other penalties, such as hits to customer loyalty and the business’ brand, can be significant and long-lasting.

    The challenge: Spiraling complexity introduces risk

    While preventing problems in workload automation sounds great in theory, in practice, it continues to become more difficult. Now, workload automation groups have to contend with more complex workloads, more application integrations, and an increased number of tools that are needed to manage and monitor them. Consequently, these teams are struggling to keep pace; there are simply too many workloads and interdependencies. At any given point, it can be hard to gain a clear picture of the environment—and job schedules, dependencies, volumes, durations, and more all keep changing.

    Change modeling is the answer. Here’s what you need to make it happen.

    To mitigate the risks associated with changes, your workload personnel need to be able to simulate complex modifications, even across multi-vendor, multi-platform environments. They need visibility and control over how changes to applications and workload objects will impact their existing business processes and SLAs in production. Toward that end, they  need a solution that can simulate the SLA impact of workload changes. Here are the five key capabilities an effective solution needs to deliver:

    1. Visualize changing dependencies. Dependencies may change at any time, and for any number of reasons. To effectively simulate changes and reduce SLA breaches, users need a solution that gives them the ability to view how changing dependencies might impact their business processes and critical deadlines.
    2. Estimate changes to job run duration. For effective simulation, an advanced solution needs to track the average duration of a job run and provide an estimate of the job duration after a change.
    3. Visualize simulations. Users need an intuitive, reliable interface that makes it easy to run, monitor, and analyze the simulations they execute. Once simulations have been run, users should be able to drill down, focus on potential problems, and identify areas for optimization.
    4. Deliver self-service access. Simulation capabilities should be accessible on a self-service basis, so workload teams, developers, and application owners can simulate changes on their own and see how their SLAs may be affected. By enabling self-service access, workload teams can stop being the central bottleneck, while enhancing efficiency and boosting collaboration.
    5. Establish SLA management and business process awareness. Finally, an advanced solution needs intelligent correlation around SLAs. Business processes can cross functional areas and responsibilities. If a simulated job change is run, any SLAs that could be affected should be reflected in the simulation output—without requiring the user to know about those dependencies in advance.

    In today’s complex workload automation environments, workload teams need to establish effective change modeling. This is essential in ensuring changes are effectively vetted before they create any disruption in production environments and introduce the risk of SLA breaches.  

    For more information on establishing effective change modeling, be sure to read our Expert Series eBook, The Change Simulation You Need to Protect Your SLA. This eBook offers an in-depth look at why enterprise workload automation has grown so complex and challenging, why it’s now vital to incorporate change modeling into existing DevOps and change management workflows, and how Automation Analytics & intelligence can help. 

    Jonathan Hiett

    Jon Hiett is an IT Automation Solution Specialist at Broadcom based in the UK, with over twenty years experience working with automation tools in the financial and IT sectors. Specializing in AutoSys Workload Automation and Automic Automation Intelligence, Jon uses his expertise to help customers solve their...

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