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Why are infrastructure outages in critical industries still occurring?

John Gentry, Vice President of Marketing and Alliances –

What happened the last time someone wrote you a check? Did you leave it in your wallet for a few months before you remembered to do something with it, or did you cash it more or less right after you got it? For most people, it’s the latter. Money is one of those things that no one wants to wait around for once it’s within reach. Given that reality, immediacy is key and infrastructure outages at financial institutions are unacceptable. Even the slightest delay in a transaction can cause a domino effect for an individual, and will have an even greater impact if we’re talking about activity on the scale of a stock exchange.

So with this expectation for instant turnarounds, why do we still hear about downtime in financial services?

It’s unfortunate that poor availability and outages in this industry are still so pervasive, because there’s really no need for that to be the case. The same is true for other critical industries, such as health care and government; in fact, health care industry outages can be life-threatening. IT downtime is just a symptom of deeper root problems within the infrastructure, all of which can be addressed and removed with the proper performance monitoring technology for a facility’s end-to-end system. These platforms offer complete visibility into the operations and transactions within the full infrastructure, but right now, for a variety of reasons – including refusal to invest in long-term solutions or the proper staff – these holistic performance management platforms aren’t being regularly implemented in the businesses operating in these key fields. I think that problem will soon be addressed.

As these outages continue to happen, the tolerance for such poor performance is rapidly dwindling – both within organizations themselves and from the public. A hospital dealing with limited IT availability is going to face serious backlash when its electronic health records aren’t accessible. To combat this problem, conversations will start to pick up steam surrounding the idea of mandated performance management solutions for institutions in these industries, rather than leaving it up to each individual business to decide what kind of technology it wants to use. If the government and key parties in the industries involved can agree on this level of regulation, the excuse of being unprepared for or ignorant of such IT challenges will be obsolete. The new lowest common denominator for IT performance would become the standard these facilities should already be meeting to ensure their infrastructures are functioning at the level their industries demand.

These kinds of regulations won’t happen overnight. Even the conversations won’t start right away, but 2015 will mark the beginning of discussions to implement regulations and make preventable infrastructure outages in critical industries a thing of the past.

Nasdaq is ahead of the curve when it comes to addressing infrastructure outages. Read about why the exchange company implemented infrastructure performance management solutions from Virtual Instruments.