(Photo : Elisa Ventur on Unsplash)
We live in an age in which data is being created and propagated at an exponential rate. According to data from Statista, the amount of data created, captured, consumed and copied across the world has compounded at over 30% a year since 2001. At the same time, the number of cyber attacks across the world has also increased exponentially, widening the vulnerable threat surface of businesses. With digital transformation, networks have become vital to the overall function of businesses. Businesses have responded with understandable fear and many have accumulated a wealth of tools to manage, monitor and troubleshoot their networks. This often leads to network tool sprawl, the bane of every business, harming cybersecurity, network reliability, data centers, and app performance.
What is Network Tool Sprawl
Tool sprawl occurs when a business has too many tools doing the same job. The typical firm has between six and 20 tools dealing with the same issue, although each tool may do the job in different ways. According to Enterprise Management Associates (EMA) most recent Network Management Megatrends 2022 report, shows that network teams are using more and more tools. In 2020, 41% of network teams used between 4 and 5 network management tools, which fell to 23% in 2021, while the 9% of businesses surveyed used 11 to 15 tools in 2020, which rose to 22% in 2022. This occurs because these businesses had multiple network management teams with their own preferred tools. Businesses seem to hope that by throwing tools at the problem, they will be able to resolve those problems, but what happens instead is that, because of the lack of coordination and overall strategy, data integration is complicated and errors compound.
What Businesses Can Do
Businesses should continue to use new tools. Tool sprawl is not an excuse to not be more open to new tools. What you should do is have a network management strategy to ensure that there are no conflicts between all your tools. Network automation tools such as Cisco, Infoblox, NetBrain and SolarWinds, can help streamline your network management and automate tasks. You may even use network management services which build in automation, analytics and intelligence.
Evoluso, who provide dedicated servers, believes that businesses should think about outsourcing their network management or some aspects of that. Specialists will be able to give you a higher level of service than you would be able to achieve yourself, while preventing many of the conflicts that businesses often create with their own solutions. If your business is conservative about this, you can start with a hybrid solution.
One key driver of tool sprawl is the absence of defined and rich processes and workflows. Tools are one thing, but as we said above regarding having a network management strategy, it all has to be funneled through something. Strategy is one thing, but that strategy has to be executed through rational processes and workflows. These processes and workflows will create automatic protocols for various scenarios, freeing management from making on-the-fly decisions.
Keyword: How To Fight Network Tool Sprawl>