How to Make Mainframe Operational Data Work for Your Business
Mainframe technical data is a great source of information for how well a business is operating.
By Jacky Hofbauer04/08/2020
Understand the mainframe’s contribution to the business, determine the resources used by business services for auditing and internal chargeback, and identify any unseen mainframe issues that might be impacting business performance. All of these real-world insights can be gained through analyzing operational data.
Given all of the business insights mainframe data can offer, why do companies rarely leverage operational data as an analytical tool?
The issue With Connecting Operational Data With Business Services
Several obstacles inhibit the full analytical potential of IT teams. When it comes to making operational data applicable to day-to-day operations, three major obstacles stand in the way:
- Logs volume: As mentioned above, data is generated after every single interaction with the mainframe. This means millions of logs are generated daily, and there’s no default way to manage, organize or analyze this insurmountable volume of logs.
- Complexity: Even trained IT professionals struggle to make sense of endless strings of uncontextualized data. Overwhelmed by the complexity of logs analysis, IT experts and novices alike might decide mainframe analysis is more trouble than it’s worth.
- Connecting operational data with business operations: By default, there’s no intuitive way to bridge the gap between mainframe data and business services. There’s no one-to-one analytics framework for understanding the direct impact the mainframe has on the services of a business.
For many IT teams, mainframe data analysis is simply unrealistic. Communication breaks down and the true value of the mainframe for optimizing business services is never realized. All because IT teams lack an intuitive, affordable way to apply raw data to business strategies.
Why Analyze Operational Data From a Business Perspective?
The value of technical data for improving business services may not be immediately apparent. To even the most experienced mainframe professionals, technical data can seem like an impenetrable collection of raw figures—lacking any intuitive business framework or analytical model.
Mainframe activity can be understood as a record of insight into business activity. When deciphered, it offers a look into the mainframe’s contribution to the business. Understand the efficiency of applications, define business services in terms of technical components, encourage transparency among departments, easily understand SLA compliance and hold business units accountable — all of these real-world benefits and more can be achieved by aligning mainframe data with business services.
Learn more about analyzing operational data from a business perspective in our guide, “How to Align Mainframe Operational Data with Business Initiatives.”
Hofbauer is the President and Chief Strategy Officer of zCost Management, a leading company in MLC cost control. He has been intricately involved with system Z and z pricing for over 30 years and is a recognized expert in this area. He continues to share his knowledge and experience through well-known white papers and newsletters about system z and z pricing.