If you are educating yourself about AIOps and trying to get your arms around the various solution options, you are probably tearing your hair out by now. There is no shortage of vendors with extremely similar marketing messages, value propositions, and benefit claims. While this is common in mature markets, it is strange for nascent technologies like AIOps.
There are several possible explanations and contributing factors. First, the AIOps market’s expected growth is attracting so many entrants that they struggle to differentiate themselves. Also, in trying to appeal to executive decision makers they may over-simplify and genericize their messages.
Finally, AIOps vendors share a common vision of autonomous, self-healing systems and the ability to address all application types, stack layers, and deployment scenarios. This may lead to converging vendor claims and messages when marketeers fail to distinguish between product aspirations and reality.
In fact, there isn’t a single vendor solution today that can tackle the spectrum of IT operations challenges. The world of AIOps tools is therefore very broad and multi-dimensional, which means you have a lot of choices with distinct strengths and weaknesses once you pierce the website veneer. But you can make sense of the market and narrow the field of relevant solutions by first identifying the problems you are trying to solve, and then developing a solution landscape populated only by vendors that address those problems.
What Problem Are You Trying to Solve?
Before you start to think about solutions, you should first perform an IT Operations self-assessment to determine if your company is ready for AIOps. Most companies make the mistakes of not properly identifying the problem they are trying to solve, determining if the problem is worth solving, and understanding if the organization is positioned to solve it. If you do a good job with the first part of your readiness assessment (problem identification), you will have an easier time narrowing the field of relevant solution providers.
Build Your AIOps Solution Landscape
Once you have completed your self-assessment and successfully made a business case to pursue an AIOps initiative, you will be ready to begin evaluating various solution options. A good way to do that is to build or adopt an AIOps solution landscape. This will put the problem you are trying to solve into perspective by illuminating what problems you are not solving, as well as identifying potential integration points or adjacent solutions that can represent “next steps” in a multi-year IT Ops modernization journey.
The Challenge of Building a Solution Landscape
There are so many ways to slice and dice the AIOps market that you will find it difficult to build a simple and logical model within which you can neatly map various solution providers (e.g. two-dimensional matrix or process flow). You may have to consider solution dimensions such as:
- Application layer versus infrastructure focus
- Readymade solutions versus development platforms
- SaaS solutions versus on-premise or hybrid tools
- Native AI technology versus legacy tool extensions
- Domain-aware contextualization versus pure data-driven AI
FogLogic has developed a landscape that you can use as a starting point for building your own personalized solution map geared to your own challenges and pain points.
The FogLogic AIOps Solution Landscape
The FogLogic landscape blends a basic IT operations process view (deploy, monitor/analyze, fix) with some other key delimiters like solution stack layer.
Like most others, this landscape is not perfect, and some vendor solutions may transcend some of the boundaries. But to keep the map simple, a good rule is to map vendors to the solution landscape component that aligns best with their core strength (which is often largely a function of their product heritage). This ensures you are dealing with best-in-breed tools. Note also that your solution stack may include a business process layer above app/services. Since this is an emerging area with less proven solutions and for the sake of simplicity, it is not represented below.
The FogLogic approach to AIOps is from the application service-level perspective and its solution focuses on mission critical, third party enterprise applications like SAP, in contrast to APM tools which target in-house/custom developed systems with a DevOps perspective. FogLogic’s full-stack visibility provides a holistic analytics data set, while domain awareness provides the enterprise application context essential to delivering rapid incident root cause isolation and proactive recommendations. This allows IT Ops teams to focus on incidents that impact the business and not get distracted with alerts or incidents that don’t affect end-user service levels.
If you are looking at solution alternatives, you may be getting ahead of yourself. Checkout this guide to determine if your company is ready to move forward with your AIOps initiative.