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Retail, Healthcare, Banking, Construction: Common IT supervision issues

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Fabrice LAMBERT
Team Leader

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Although the sectors are very different in reality, the jobs are not the same, the customers are not the same, and yet the IT problems are often quite similar in the retail, health, banking or construction sectors

Common issues

In the end, the IT of a major B2C retailer, a nursing home manager, a network of bank branches or a real estate builder have common points and common problems:

  • Central IT hosted in a datacenter
  • Tens, hundreds, or even thousands of sites (They are then called shops, health centres, agencies, ...)
  • Each site has a standardized infrastructure, identical or almost identical with the other sites. (In a store, there are X cash registers, in a nursing home Y servers and routers, in a branch office servers, local storage, printers ....)

Our experience with all of these customers shows us that: The supervision needs are then often common.

  • Critically supervise the "central" IT. Without it, thousands of employees are at a standstill.
  • Supervise network links to sites and raise an alert when a site is no longer reachable.
  • Check the proper functioning of local equipment and communicate their availability easily with users on site (without informing them about other sites).
  • Provide user support with tools to facilitate remote interventions.

ServiceNav, an answer to multi-site supervision problems

Single or multi-pooler infrastructure

To supervise a multitude of sites 2 main architectures are possible:

  • An architecture with ServiceNavBoxes (poolers) that provide "central" supervision. The ServiceNav Boxes are positioned in the customer's datacenter and then provide supervision of all the elements of the sites via the network (often MPLS). Less ServiceNav Boxes, which are then shared, to set up, but more load on the network.
  • An architecture with a ServiceNav Box (a pooler) on each site. Supervision as close as possible to the equipment, no load on the inter-site network, but requires the ability to deploy one ServiceNavBox per site
  • A hybrid architecture with ServiceNav Boxes on the "big" or most sensitive sites and shared ServiceNav Boxes for the smaller sites. A good compromise adapted to sites with different criticalities

Central application monitoring

This is one of the major contributions of ServiceNav, presented on this blog many times, the service weather will allow to have a view on the availability of the IS and more particularly of the applications essential to the sites:

  • Central purchasing agency stocks ;
  • Follow-up of the turnover of the stores,
  • Availability of the care application,
  • Availability of rooms between nursing homes,
  • Access to construction plans,
  • Access to billing and accounting software,
  • Access to lending tools,
  • ...

Supervision of the network links to the sites

Which site is no longer reachable? Where is an emergency intervention necessary?

Thanks to the geographical mapping of the sites, it is easy for an operator to see in a few seconds which sites are not reachable and therefore have a priori network.

The intervention of a technician is then easy and fast to bring a solution to the site which will often be blocked in its exploitation

Local supervision and visibility for users

Thanks to the supervision of all the elements of the sites, the MAP module and the segmentation of rights by site, each site manager (and his teams) can have a synthetic view of his site.

Local or central operating problem? The information is directly accessible.

Which local equipment requires a quick response? The information is available.

Valuable help for remote support teams

A supervision alert, a call from a user on site? Sometimes the intervention on site can be easy to do (for example restarting a switch), but guiding a user whose job is not IT (a cashier, an architect, a bank adviser, ...) is not always easy.

With the MAP module, it is easy to set up site maps and for the technician to guide his global contact to the right equipment to do a simple operation that can avoid moving a mobile technician and leaving the site for several hours without an IT solution.

Different businesses, common supervision solutions

In the end, whether it is for a department store, a bank, a health care facility or a real estate builder, ServiceNav's approach will be quite similar and the flexibility of the product will allow everyone to find solutions adapted to their specific needs.

With consultants who know the product inside out and have regular experience in multi-site environments, the deployment of ServiceNav for all businesses is quick and easy.

CIOs, network and system administrators, support technicians and users all share the same tool to have the right information at the right time.

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