Applications are the visible component of IT for internal and external users, and there is a direct relationship between application quality, user productivity and client satisfaction. In many enterprises, CEOs have now realized that the quality of IT services is a major business component and differentiator. This has changed the application management landscape: The accent is now on application quality and IT efficiency.
The widespread use of architectures such as J2EE and .NET have brought important changes in the way that the underlying infrastructure supports its application. The virtual machine and its opacity to traditional hardware monitoring agents created a whole new class of management solutions known as application performance management (APM).
Three capabilities gave birth to today's complex applications:
- 1) The ability to federate multiple applications from the Java EE or .NET platform using some form of enterprise application integration (EAI) to connect existing applications;
- 2) The generation of complementary transactions with external systems; and
- 3) The inclusion of web services.
These capabilities brought applications closer than ever to the business process, since in any given process, the multiple steps that separate applications had performed in the past were now integrated. Discrete steps in a business process allowed for a manual check on their completion; however, that control was no longer available in the integrated environment and had to be replaced by data coming from infrastructure management. Finally, the multiplication of moving parts in complex business services means that the focus is no longer on the black box represented by the Java EE application server. In fact, the use of virtualization and most probably cloud computing, public or private, multiplies the number of black boxes.
At IBR, we understand these challenges and our enterprise architects understand that meeting or exceeding service level agreements can only be achieved through the establishment of application performance management early on and having special focus as we move from requirements to design and implementation to deployment and migration. We have developed past customer application performance strategies and plans and are well versed in the use of the leading application management toolsets.