Most of us like have the proper tools for the job; trying to undo Phillips screws with a penknife, using your gold card to get the ice off the windscreen or using notepad to write F# is no fun. I would argue that the proper tool for running a modern Data Centre is System Center not just to save money as this report from last year’s War on Cost event by Inframon suggests..

but so that IT keeps pace with what the business demands of it.

That’s easy to say but how do you justify the expense of implementing it, I don’t mean the license costs rather the time and effort  taken to adapt its potential to the needs of your business.  I would liken this to investing in an ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning):

  • You could mash together a series of tools and utilities that you have in place already or that cam bundled with some of your infrastructure.  However the ability of each part of an ERP system to understand the resources, people and assets and have one mechanism for creating business process automation does offer economies of scale and the ability to adapt process far more quickly than would be the case otherwise
  • ERP systems are about managing all of your resources, while System Center this is just limited to your IT infrastructure, however the similarities are striking
    • You define process and and standards with the business.  Service Manager and the
    • the approval processes for getting resources automatically spawns the task to create those services 
    • The use of resources needs to be accounted for
    • You use reporting and analytics to monitor activity and predict demand
  • As any ERP consultant will tell you, there’s a great career to be had in implementing these systems and I am sure that individuals who embrace this vision as well as companies like Inframon will find plenty of projects to work on. Not only that there is a whole ecosystem around this implementation from, audit & compliance to security and business intelligence.

I mentioned the War on Cost event earlier and General Nathan Bedford Forrest was once misquoted as saying  winning a war is about getting there “fustest with the mostest”. Applying that to your career in these increasingly cloudy times I would advise you to get there fustest by learning about System Center 2012 on the Microsoft Virtual Academy  or at our rapidly filling IT Camps before your peers and getting their mostest by looking out for the upcoming System Center 2012 certifications