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State Of The Apm Industry

By Expert Author: Sampath Prakash

Application Performance Management (APM) Industry has grown well in the last five years. It is now a multi-billion dollar industry and still growing. The awareness of APM issues among the businesses and IT professionals has improved considerably. But the questions to ask at this juncture are –how does it stack against adjacent disciplines and has it realized its full potential?

Security and Performance management (under Capacity management) come under the umbrella of ITIL framework of services. But the field of security has done exceedingly well in the last 20 years or so and continues to thrive. This is evident by so many activities and buzz around the security industry. To start with, the IT security budget in a company is many times that allocated for APM in terms of both capital investment and personnel (APM includes both application and network performance management).

Then we have the industry certifications in security – CISSP, CISA, CSSLP to name a few. There are non-profit organizations such as (ISC2) and ISO which have created the body of knowledge for security and some of them promote these certifications. There are many forums (ISC2, SANS, etc.) who are actively engaged in education and training. They also act as a forum for bringing in security vendors to engage in webinars to promote the latest technology and products. The certifications are well recognized in the industry and the candidates with certifications are well sought after for employment and career advancement. Since the certifications need constant education and training to keep them current the flow of knowledge has become self-sustaining and perpetual.

Security by nature is rooted in “fear” (who leaves their home door unlocked?). It is sold as an insurance against threats that may or may not happen. Information security falls in the domain of criminals/law-enforcement in the civilian life and Cyber-wars in the geo-political context. There are government and industry regulations for businesses to be compliant to security standards (e.g., FISMA, HIPAA, PCI, etc.). No wonder that the security industry is thriving.

Most of the above drivers are absent for the APM industry. While it is unlikely that there will be regulations called by the governments anytime in the future (although it sounded like a good idea after witnessing the debacle in the launch of the federal insurance exchanges under Obama care!), APM industry could get a boost by simply implementing many of the practices that security industry has perfected. Another great example to follow is the similar success of Project Management Institute (PMI) and its PMP certification.

Here are some recommendations that APM industry could implement to become an ongoing thriving industry:

Establish an APM forum that is supported by the top APM vendors

Assemble existing body of knowledge for reference

Create the basic body of knowledge for APM to promote a common understanding

Start one APM certification to begin with and create more as needed

Offer periodic seminars and webinars to foster knowledge

Have vendor neutral conferences throughout the world spaced all through the year

Increase APM awareness in the universities and schools

Bodies and forums are unlikely to succeed by themselves – what we need is a handful of determined champions who have real life passion and are intent to make a difference to the APM world.

Well, who wants to bell the cat?

Apsera Tech has years of experience in WAN optimization, networking and application performance management. Apsera Tech’s APM consulting services have helped Fortune 1000 companies in diverse industries in planning/resolving critical business application performance issues like slow application response time, WAN optimization and WAN acceleration. For more details, please visit our website at Apseratech.com.

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