Mainframe

Come What May: Anticipate Disasters, and Recover from them Quickly

July 21, 2022

Empower your IT organization to power through uncertainty

Successful organizations know to expect the unexpected and are prepared for it. They invest in flexible infrastructures that are always ready to respond to a potential outage. The reason is simple. Those organizations that are able to recover from an outage instantly are able to minimize business disruption and get their business back up and running as quickly as possible - often avoiding any true business impact.

The Case for Resiliency

Business continuity can cover a lot of ground, ranging from facilities management to staffing, but it typically goes back to disaster recovery. And while that focus is important, the ability to keep companies up and running no matter what happens calls for more. Resiliency is really the result of two different factors: having a flexible infrastructure and the capability to bounce back from outages.

Most people don’t notice technology until it stops working. No one ever calls a help desk to thank them for 99.999% uptime – but if systems go down for five minutes, end users will swiftly and loudly voice their concern and displeasure. That’s because we live in a world where technology plays a significant role in practically everything we do. We are so dependent on our systems that even a brief glitch is a cause for major consternation.

System outages can result in serious economic loss and lasting harm to customer experience and confidence. Visa, the world’s largest card payment company, processes 70,000+ transactions every second with an estimated annual payment volume of nearly $10 trillion, making the value of each second over $300,000. If just 4 seconds are lost, the company would not just lose those funds – over $1 million – it would also incur a severe hit to its reputation. For other Fortune 1000 companies, the risks and damage from an outage are similar.

The Best Way to Manage a Crisis is to Not Have a Crisis to Manage

There is always a need to manage risk to the IT infrastructure at all levels to ensure business continuity. That task continues to face increasing challenges. Over the last several years, unprecedented global events have had a significant impact on both IT and business requirements. The global pandemic has accelerated the need for businesses to enhance their digital experiences. Global warming, social unrest, and regional conflicts underscore the need for geographically dispersed sites to keep critical business services running in the event of a disaster. 

Of course, no matter how much planning you do, some things are just out of a business’s control. Earthquakes, hurricanes, volcanos, tsunamis, wars, and other conflicts can happen quickly, so you need to be prepared for everything and expect the unexpected. Those organizations that succeed in managing risk better than others will reap enduring value.

The Power of a Flexible Infrastructure

To minimize and manage risk, it is necessary to build resiliency in both hardware and software. Doing so enables you to avoid outages and to provide for continuous operation in the event of an outage should one occur. Organizations accomplish this through built-in redundancy and tight integration of their hardware, operating systems, and middleware, which host their business critical applications.

In the event that an outage does occur, businesses need to have the infrastructure and horsepower to get things back up and running as quickly as possible. Hardware has gotten faster every year, and the software that supports it has kept pace. As a result, global enterprises that experience outages and downtime can flick the switch and be up and running almost instantly. This is the essence of having a flexible architecture.

Delivering Resiliency

The new z16 mainframe aids the goals of availability and proactive outage avoidance with support features that boost recovery and flexible infrastructure. When IT shops bring the power of industry-leading automation, performance, and reporting tools to the new platform, they can manage risks and ensure resilient applications even more easily. Broadcom provides these tools and works with clients to build resiliency seamlessly into their systems through solutions that enable them to better manage their IT infrastructures.

We regularly partner with clients to improve how effectively they can handle the mainframe equivalent of a power outage.  For example, OPS/MVS enables businesses to automate system recovery boost activity. And it has management features so businesses can coordinate application movement for a flexible infrastructure migration event.

Every successful business is looking to increase efficiency and improve system performance. We make those goals a reality for our clients by empowering them to proactively identify and resolve problems. SYSVIEW is a good example. The software delivers the capability for real time monitoring and visibility into mainframe performance, providing access to data across multiple systems. This enables businesses to gain actionable insights into resiliency features before and during a recovery event.

An important early step in building a flexible infrastructure is mapping business processes to IT services and resources. Doing so provides visibility into IT resource consumption so you can assess system performance and conduct appropriate storage and capacity planning. MICS Resource Management delivers this capability by simplifying the management of data and improving visualization. As a result, businesses can better align their IT investments to critical business needs, such as licensing additional instant recovery or flexible infrastructure resources to shore up their system’s resiliency features. 

Business continuity and regulatory compliance also require mainframe shops to prove their Db2 systems can quickly recover from breaches and failures. Broadcom’s Recovery Suite for Db2 for z/OS helps validate that users can successfully recover Db2 in a timely fashion to ensure that they are always in compliance with regulations and business objectives.

To keep your business strong, you need to keep your infrastructure healthy. It takes proper planning, visibility, and the right infrastructure tools to put risk in its place and keep your business up and running.

If you’d like to discuss this topic further, please contact me directly at thomas.angle@broadcom.com.     

 

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