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Show your servers some love with these top strategy tips

Here are three key aspects to pay attention to for a successful server strategy

There really is no such thing as "plug and play" in business technology, despite the fashion for the term. The whole IT estate, from endpoints to central infrastructure, needs careful management, and nowhere is this more important than when it comes to servers.

Working out how to make your IT infrastructure and servers work as a successful part of your business can be a challenge, so here we take you through three steps to ensure your strategy has a solid foundation.

Take responsibility

One of the first things to establish is who is responsible for your server strategy. It is usually driven by the manager responsible for the IT infrastructure, but there's a growing need to accommodate the views and requirements of various stakeholders whose needs have to be met throughout the life of the investment.

A server strategy is a technology initiative and therefore must involve an organisation's operations people and developers, but it should also include enterprise architects and development leads as they're the custodians of the systems that deliver the functionality the business needs.

This doesn't mean that the team has to be large, but there should be representatives included from each side to ensure a common understanding of what needs to be done and what risks there are.

Make sure the tools are right

Which tools a company uses may well be influenced by which vendor they purchase the infrastructure from. There are a multitude of tools and techniques that help with the day-to-day operations of servers, but relatively few tools exist that provide a neutral influence on server choice.

This doesn't mean organisations are completely penned in by the vendor they choose, though. When it comes to strategies like data automation, there are plenty of third-party tools to choose from, many of which are actively supported by vendors.

It is also important to implement good data centre infrastructure management (DCIM) tools, which support extensive what if' capabilities.

Ensuring success

When it comes to making a success of any server strategy, there's one thing that's vital to remember: this is an on-going process, not a one-off. In reality, without continuous management, there is no strategy, just an initial plan.

Organisations need to have lots of monitoring tools and feedback loops in place, as well as post-mortems on projects that have happened to gain maximum visibility into what is actually happening. The only way to reliably do that is to have good monitoring capabilities, and for that, good management is needed.

Putting a server strategy in place may seem like a mammoth task, but it's also a vital one to ensuring business success. By having a clear idea of who should be involved and how it will be managed, firms can ensure their server strategy is fit for purpose both now and in the future.

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