Q&A:

QUESTION: "We have skills on staff, why should we consider managed VMware Stack services from GCSIT?"

by Mat Kordell, GCSIT Manager of Support Services

ANSWER:

The great majority of our Managed VMWare-Stack clients have VMWare skills on staff and still choose to subscribe to our services in a co-managed relationship. Here are the top 5 reasons why:

1. BEST PRACTICES  GCSIT’s expert staff are always up-to-date with best practices from VMWare and major storage and networking providers. Additionally, we compile our own best practices from experience in design, architecture, implementation and support of literally hundreds of VMWare environments. Our Managed VMWare-Stack clients benefit from the combined and concentrated knowledge, skills and best practices of our Design & Architecture, Deployment Engineering and Support Engineering teams.  We will regularly review your environment and alert you if anything falls outside of our best practices or otherwise puts your environment at risk.

2. ESTABLISHED PROCESSES  From patch management to version or hardware upgrades, GCSIT’s Engineers work first in the lab to create reliable and repeatable processes for any type of change to your environment. We then create real-time monitors and/or recurring tickets to monitor, alert or otherwise review the status of various aspects of your environment. When you request a change, we determine if there has been an established process and if not, we work it out in our lab first so that we know what to expect when we go live. We continually monitor for available patches and updates to your environment and review our recommendations with you at regularly scheduled stewardship events.  

3. FOCUS ON WHAT MATTERS MOST  It’s a rare occasion when I meet an IT practitioner who has time to get to all of the tasks on their task list.  In order for your team to be an effective and valuable asset to your organization, rather than a cost-center only called upon when there are problems, you and your team need to be focused on connecting with key stakeholders to align your technology to business requirements. Let GCSIT’s engineers take some of the load off so that you can focus on what matters. Need to get some metrics on your VMWare environment?  Need to research some potential upgrades?  Have specific tasks, changes or performance tuning requirements in your environment? You can send us just about any task that relates to your managed equipment, we will open a ticket and update you as we progress through completion of the work. Let us handle this remedial work for you while you focus on work that highlights the value your team brings to your organization.

4. FRESH PAIR OF EYES The human brain tries it’s best to simplify the world around us and in doing so it has a tenancy to overlook common or recurring events as they become expected events. In the NOC/SOC they call this “being trained to see red” - when alerts or issues become commonplace and are easily inadvertently ignored. GCSIT will have numerous expert eyes on your systems on a daily basis. They will be reviewing both pre-determined data points - which we’ve determined are key performance and health indicators - against established thresholds, as well as any additional data-points that stand out or are unique to your environment. 

5. PEACE OF MIND  All of the planning in the world can’t prevent every IT gremlin from having their way with your environment. At some point, regardless of your preventative measures, you will likely find yourself in a situation that your team can’t handle with their levels of knowledge, skills, or available time. When the proverbial cow-pie hits the fan, you want to make sure that your team has immediate access to expert recourses to help you navigate the situation quickly and efficiently to resolution. We can work on the issue, provide additional perspective, escalate to top-tier engineers and/or engage with vendor support on your behalf. This could free your team up to provide necessary communications to affected business units and provide interim support to keep the business running during the outage.