Modernized Platform Demands Unified Management
Growth is driving change at Vancity – growth in the numbers of branches and members, and with the migration from Unix/Oracle-based systems to Microsoft Windows SQL Servers – growth in the IT environment. While modernizing its core banking application from an old mainframe system to Temenos T24, Vancity is doubling its server count and increasing data volume 38% a year. In this context, Vancity aimed to minimize risk and ensure “always-on” availability. A long-time user of Micro Focus software to drive efficiencies, the credit union recently deployed OMi to simplify, integrate, and automate IT operations management.
Vancity needs its internal and external applications – including databases, Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system, online banking and ATMs – to run securely and flawlessly for exemplary service to members. The credit union relies on Micro Focus Security ArcSight for enterprise security, and a suite of Micro Focus operations management tools to deliver performance, speed, and efficiency. Vancity also uses InfoPath forms for monitoring, and a range of third-party solutions including System Center Operations Manager (SCOM) and NetScout. Its challenge was to integrate all of these solutions to deliver enterprise visibility and proactive control.
“For us, the story is tying together all of the disparate systems,” says Jay Rooney, a systems analyst III at Vancity. “OMi – the OpsBridge – is the only tool I know that lets you do that, and automate management from a single pane of glass.”
OMi Delivers Event Correlation, Unified Dashboards
Vancity has used Micro Focus Operations Manager (OM) since 1999 for fault and per-formance monitoring. They evolved to OMi which sits on top of OM to act as a manager of managers, federating data from Micro Focus and thirdparty tools and applying analytics to deliver consolidated business service management. “It lets us bring in our multitude of monitoring tools – SCOM, SiteScope, OM, NNMi, and others – and give operators end-to-end dashboard visibility,” Rooney says. Event correlation has slashed the number of daily events by 93%, leaving just those items more likely to be actionable, which in turn lets operators avoid dead-end troubleshooting. “Say a website is down; there’s no point in troubleshooting the web server if the actual network is down,” Rooney explains. “Now we can see it all in one spot, whereas before, each tool represented its own reporting silo; we might know the website was down but not why.” He estimates that the number of tickets is down 50% and finding root causes is 70% faster – all contributing to lower Mean Time to Resolution. The IT staff time saved adds up to approximately $50,000 a year.
Write Once, Deploy Anywhere – Much Better
As Vancity doubles its server count in the transition to Windows-based systems, OMi management templates. “Rather than end up with 700 versions of the same policy, changed slightly for each host, you write one policy and when you deploy it, just change your parameter value,” Rooney says. “I’m not doing useless copy/copy/copy, deploy/deploy/deploy. Write once, deploy anywhere. Much better.”
The ability to push default monitoring and system policies is part of a larger picture of easier change management. Using Micro Focus software, Vancity discovers assets as they come online, shares change requests with the monitoring system, uncovers legacy system interconnections, and prevents unexpected downstream consequences. Security and high availability create a satisfying customer experience and reduce risk while freeing IT staff to focus on providing value to the business – such as the current infrastructure transformation. “The takeaway from all of this,” Rooney says, “is that we’re bringing our legacy environment up to date and also simplifying management.”