INSIGHTS 24 March 2021 | 3 min read

Dave Lewis An accomplished Professional Services and technology leader with experience across a diverse range of enterprise software. Passionately customer focused and results driven with an entrepreneurial character, having built and managed businesses from startup. Significant experience working with international blue-chip organisations in a variety of markets including banking & financial services, telecommunications, public sector, AEC & FM, staffing, retail and transport.

The five steps to a successful AIOps launch

As with all innovations, the implementation of AIOps can be challenging at a technical and human level. Follow these steps to ensure your AIOps solution takes off successfully.

A people first strategy

Realisation of a good strategy starts with the right team, so begin with a complete unfiltered appraisal of the talent and experience that you have available. A collaboration of the right people from the right teams working together is paramount to your success. You may need to consider external experts to help set the board for AIOps success.

Immediately address any training requirements within your team. For example, if your ITOps team has a clear understanding of how machine learning works, they will be able to audit it in operation.

Start small and iterate. Your team needs to quickly establish the practice of being successful. Begin with one or two use cases or workloads for improvement that you’re confident your newly formed team can deliver in line with your goals.

Remember - it’s vital to understand the data requirements of your initial use cases otherwise even the most comprehensive solution won’t work.

Start with your testing and deployment process in mind, liaise with your trainers as soon as possible, to both set expectations and ensure that they are prepared for the challenges of deployment. Forewarned is forearmed.

Engage your working community. It may sound overly simple to suggest that your success in terms of implementing AIOps is rooted in the success of users, but that’s the truth. As with all innovations, early adoption is absolutely vital. The most successful projects always generate an understanding of the benefits of the new technology to the business. And on a human level, to the users in their roles.

Find the early adopters and empower them with understanding to champion your cause.

Obtain buy-in and drive enthusiasm for the goals of the project

The decision to embark on any project starts with the consideration “why change at all?” Understand and communicate the limitations with the way things are being done now, describe and evangelise the improved future state and then map out a route to get there. Identify key metrics that will demonstrate the improvements the project delivers, baselining the starting position before commencing work to provide a framework for measuring future success.

Set goals for your project, make them simple and realistic. While you’re planning to measure your success, plan to report it too, establish a system of reporting to demonstrate the project’s progress.

Deployment

Give your deployment the respect and ongoing investment in time and resources to be successful it deserves. A system that will be integral to hitting key business targets, whether reducing time or cost to repair faults, increasing customer satisfaction through reduced downtime, or allowing operations teams to focus on strategic activities to drive competitive advantage, is worth investing time and resources in, and it will need just that.

Market-leading AIOps technologies are designed to provide fast time-to-value and efficiency of development and deployment, but that doesn’t mean it’s a quick and easy thing to do properly. The problems we are solving and use cases we are addressing with AIOps are complex and wide-ranging and the benefits to the business of getting it right are significant. It is therefore not an investment to be taken lightly, but companies should take confidence from that.

Practice together, every day

Practice is a verb. The most enjoyable and important part of the development and deployment of any new technology or innovation, is the way that your team practices and improves every day.

Ensure that you drive the key lessons of how the AIOps system works, and that you fully understand the data requirements for it to work successfully. Then practice and refine. All the time. Every day.

Early on focus on the use cases that are simple to implement and likely to deliver quick wins. Ensure that your team is successfully using AIOps. And, that your IT team understands the way in which the algorithm interacts with the data to reach conclusions.

With that understanding comes adoption and ownership, your IT operators will be empowered to analyse performance and make suggestions.

Understanding and practice make the process of implementation non-threatening and therefore far more likely to be successful.

Review

Make your reviews holistic. Demonstrate the immediate success of your AIOps implementation against specific business metrics, whether that is an increase in the speed of ticket resolution or simply the decline in ticket volume.

As with all change management you will benefit greatly from some human insight – add some qualitative insights to your review stage. Talk openly with users and champions. Seek to learn about the experience of using the product that you’ve delivered before refining your process for the next iterations.