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BigPanda 2021 Predictions: Five 2021 Predictions (gasp!) in the world of IT Operations

vmblog 2021 prediction series 

Industry executives and experts share their predictions for 2021.  Read them in this 13th annual series exclusive.

Five 2021 Predictions (gasp!) in the world of IT Operations

By Cari Jaquet, VP of Marketing at BigPanda

No one should look back on the list of predictions made at the end of 2019 because well, 2020 was unpredictable. Today, many executives long for a renewed sense of stability, which may not happen completely in 2021. That said, conditions will level off following the fallout presented by the global pandemic, and we expect to have a slightly better sense of what to expect as the year unfolds. With that backdrop, here are five predictions from executives at the AIOps event correlation and automation company BigPanda on what to expect in the IT Ops world in 2021:

1.  IT ‘zombie companies' will start to fall off. Jason Walker, field CTO and BigPanda and former Head of IT Ops at Blizzard Entertainment, says that a phenomenon most common in financial and investment industries will become more common in IT. "In the investment world, there is a financial concept known as a ‘zombie company.' These companies are only able to remain in business because financial debt is artificially cheap - but when rates rise to normal levels, they are not able to survive," Walker says. "In the IT world, the pandemic has exposed a new type of zombie company: a company that has not digitally transformed its IT infrastructure and operations and has survived because it relied on its brick-and-mortar business or antiquated supply chains. These zombie companies are going to die off in 2021. Economic contraction is going to eliminate companies who have not modernized their IT and infrastructure, and therefore can't address the demand for digital services."

2.  Consolidation will rear its head. Walker also says that financial pressure due to the COVID-generated economic downturn will drive consolidation in the IT Ops vendor space. "Strong companies will buy up promising but cash-poor startups, subsequently moving into adjacent spaces through acquisitions," he says.

3.  Organizations will better understand the cost of specific incidents. Karthik Ranganathan, chief enterprise architect at NTT DATA, says proactively identifying the cost of incidents with a forward-looking view via AI and automation will drive tremendous value for operations teams. "What is the cost per minute for core operation systems versus systems driving business change versus systems driving innovation?" he asks. "It's not core operations for the sake of operations, first thing's first: we have to get a better understanding of the cost of an incident."

4.  Automation will become more meaningful. Employee quality of life will increase in a meaningful way as a result of automation. "We leverage automation for all sorts of things," adds David Levinger, head of IT operations at Machinify. "There's undeniable value in it, especially when you start to look at the massive diversity of endpoints and pieces of data that IT teams are now being asked to evaluate," according to Mohan Kompella, BigPanda's vice president of product marketing. "The automation of repetitive and minor tasks will free time for more valuable and creative work, allowing IT employees at all levels to focus on more rewarding tasks," he says.

5.  The rise of 'Switzerland platforms.' Paul Szymczyk, BigPanda's vice president of global sales, forecasts an increase in the use of "Switzerland' platforms" - platforms that unify tools, teams and workflows. "As companies embrace the cloud, most will not be able to leave their legacy environments and tools fully behind. Siloed and fragmented Cloud Ops, DevOps, IT Ops and NOC teams will prevent organizations from being able to drive across-the-board improvements in uptime, SLAs and MTTx metrics," says Szymczyk. "This will be an obstacle for CIOs and IT executives looking to maximize uptime and please customers, which will lead to these ‘Switzerland platforms' becoming a must-have."

After talking to customers and partners about what they think is in store, I decided to get in on the action with two of my own:

"Dinosaurs" will start to disappear. The market is about to witness the mass extinction of dinosaurs - vendors with on-premises software who have been dragging their feet on re-platforming to SaaS solutions. They will try desperately to hang on to existing customers while pivoting investments, people and messaging with the promise of their new SaaS-centric, all-in-one platform.

Workers will slowly but surely start returning to offices. By July 2021, companies will return to a hybrid home/office work model. Many employees fled expensive housing markets and moved to more affordable cities over the last year because they were able to work remotely while retaining their premium salaries. Suddenly, as offices reopen, companies will ask employees to decide whether they want to return to the company locations or take a cut in salary and stay where they are.

Do you have a prediction? Reach out and share: @meiamcari or on LinkedIn


About the Author

Cari Jaquet

Cari Jaquet is the head of marketing at BigPanda, responsible for ensuring the alignment and delivery of strategic marketing around key corporate initiatives and revenue targets. With a 20-year track record of results-oriented programs and innovative marketing strategies, Cari oversees all aspects of integrated marketing campaigns and communications programs, including PR, analyst relations, web, social, digital and channel marketing. Cari prides herself on managing high-performing and happy teams who build tight relationships with the field and deliver bottom line results for the business. Prior to BigPanda, Cari was the Vice President of Marketing driving integrated programs for Rimini Street, Paxata, SAP, Hyperion and Cisco.

Published Monday, December 21, 2020 7:45 AM by David Marshall
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