Proactivity is Latin and refers to taking an initiative action as opposed to an expectant reactive action. Using this as their modus operandi S&N AG staff conceptualise solutions that make possible an above-average availability of mission-critical applications.
Efficient and trouble-free operation is a fundamental prerequisite in client advisory services and transaction businesses. In specialised service centres too, because of centralisation, there has to be almost 100% availability of IT systems to ensure responsive operation control for staff.
The solutions used, for example, in finance management, investment management, policy and claims management, or cash management require constant access to customer relationship and other central services. These solutions consist of a combination of older legacy and standard systems and new bespoke systems.
S&N staff attach great importance to a holistic view of system components necessary for applications and resources. The quality and availability of an application depends on the end-user ‘s subjective impression of the application. Even if the response times of each system component are within accepted tolerances, application usability can be unreasonable.
Only the monitoring of the end-to-end application availability and defined, business-oriented service level agreements (SLAs) provide effective monitoring of all proactive and reactive operational activities. Together with the client, S&N defines technical and organisational key performance indicators (KPIs) that can be ensured on the basis of above-average availability.
S&N has a wealth of experience and uses this in the design of new solutions. This means a robust architecture is provided early on and so-called "black boxes" are avoided.
With a defined methodology, the best possible end-to-end availability can be ensured. This includes both organisational as well as technical interfaces. With an "operating checklist” critical business processes, maximum response times, dependent resources, essential services and all thresholds are defined. In particular, specific service-failure scenarios with workflow and notification routes can be regulated in advance because of clearly defined priorities and recovery times. The measurement points and measurement values defined in the conceptual phase are verified and approved before the production launch of the test environment.
Solutions for difficult cases too
There are also solutions that, initially, were focused on providing technical functionality. In this case, the consequence is an elaborate production launch. Technical problems can often only be identified and remedied with great difficulty. Also from a risk and operational point of view, these solutions should not go directly into production, but often the business pressure is too great and there is no time for improvements in the project. Consequently the test results from the business functions are what determine the production date; there is a lack of "operating quality gates".
As part of its transition management, S&N provides a process model for the production deployment of these solutions, which enable rapid product introduction and reduce operational risk. The aim is to identify the risk factors early and establish proactive operational monitoring independent of a solution fit.
The target of proactive application management is 100% service availability and, in terms of early detection of malfunctions, offers targeted alerts, immediate restoration of service and a lasting solution when problems arise.
Proactive application management forms part of S&N AG’s "managed application lifecycle.