Capacity Management aims to avoid situations in which unnecessary investments are made in technologies that do not meet the real needs of the business or which are over-dimensioned, or by contrast, to avoid situations in which productivity is undermined by a shortage of, or inefficient use of, the existing technology.
Both scenarios frequently arise and can often be found coexisting in a single organization: managers, customers and computer personnel are blinded by technologies they do not really need and buy them while overlooking applications, hardware and services that would genuinely increase the productivity in their working environments.
One of the main tasks of Blue Chip is to qualify the perception that "capacity is cheap." Although, as a result of the falling cost of computer hardware and applications the cost of increasing capacity may initially not be very great, administering and maintaining disproportionate infrastructure can be very expensive in the long term.
The main benefits of good Capacity Management are:
- The performance of IT resources is optimized.
- The necessary capacity is available when it is needed, avoiding a negative impact on quality of service.
- Unnecessary expenses caused by "last minute" purchases are avoided. Growth of the infrastructure is planned, allowing it to be matched to real business needs.
- The cost of maintenance and administration associated with obsolete or unnecessary hardware and applications are reduced.
- Possible incompatibilities and faults in the IT infrastructure are reduced.
In summary - the management of purchases and maintenance of IT services is rationalized, with the consequent reduction in costs and increase in performance. Implementing an appropriate Capacity Management policy can also run into serious difficulties, such as:
- Insufficient information for realistic capacity planning.
- Unrealistic expectations about the cost savings and improvements in performance.
- Inadequate resources to monitor performance properly.
- Distributed and excessively complex IT infrastructure making access to data difficult.
Rapid technological change makes it necessary to continuously review the plans and scenarios envisaged.
Correct dimensioning of Capacity Management itself - excessive enthusiasm may result in expensive capacity analyses that might have been made unnecessary by buying new hardware or software.