Get Up-To-Speed on Special
Interests at Pulse 2011

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Service Management in Action.

Pulse 2011 will surpass even the spectacular success of the 2010 show, delivering more information, in more ways, on more relevant subjects, than ever before. From February 27 to March 2, the expected 7,000 attendees at the MGM Grand Hotel in Las Vegas will have the opportunity to:

Special interest areas: Isolate the sessions of highest value

Of course, with such a rich array of information to choose from, some attendees may wonder: "How can I zero in on exactly the right sessions for me?"

A Pulse attendee whose organization recently deployed an IBM System z mainframe, for example, may find that special interest outweighs all others. And there will certainly be many sessions that include content on that subject. Yet the System z per se might not be specifically mentioned by name in session titles or abstract descriptions.

Fortunately, IBM has made solving this problem very straightforward for attendees with special interests of this type.

"Once attendees have registered for the show and received a confirmation, they can begin using IBM's Pulse Portal site. They can then build a custom event agenda to ensure they get the best possible learning experience over the four days of the show."

Once attendees have registered for the show and received a confirmation, they can begin using IBM's Pulse SmartSite. They can then build a custom event agenda to ensure they get the best possible learning experience over the four days of the show.

Specifically, from the Agenda Builder section, they can search for relevant sessions in several different ways—one of which is by Special Interest Area. These special interests are fairly broad subjects that span a wide variety of different kinds of sessions.

For the convenience of attendees, IBM has identified seven such special interests: best practices and implementation, cloud computing, economics, energy management, midsize business, System z, and virtualization.

Thus, by using the portal, our hypothetical attendee with a special interest in System z could rapidly identify all the Pulse sessions of highest personal value.

Best Practices and Implementation

Increasingly, organizations are realizing that they can get a better business outcome by shifting their focus from the technology per se to the services the technology supports.

And in the pursuit of end-to-end improvements in service delivery, they will often need to rethink the infrastructure, and its implementation, at a deep level.

This is an area where best practices can really make a difference—the big picture of how well the infrastructure does or does not drive service management goals. Today, best practice frameworks such as ITIL—the Information Technology Infrastructure Library, revised in version three specifically to address service management—are acquiring increasing momentum. They can help organizations avoid the mistakes made by others and achieve their goals more quickly, more cost-effectively, and at lower overall business risk.

This special interest area will address not just best practices per se, but also discuss case studies drawn from the real world, and the lessons learned as a result.

System z

The IBM System z is the gold standard in enterprise mainframes, and organizations fortunate enough to have made the investment in one can leverage it to achieve tremendous business benefits in an incredibly broad range of areas—many of which are directly pertinent to service management.

For instance, the System z makes an excellent hub of service management. This is particularly true given the fact that the eleventh iteration of System z, known as zEnterprise, is a centralized platform that, via an integrated IBM BladeCenter, can support nearly every major operating system and application available and in use by businesses today.

By serving as a crossroads of both IT services and IT service management, the System z can simplify the overall management challenge enormously. This approach delivers substantially better visibility, control, and automation over services than older, more segregated management paradigms.

The result? Faster, more efficient, and more cost-effective service delivery—at every stage in the service lifecycle and across the entire enterprise.

Virtualization

Virtualization is a keystone approach to getting superior business value from IT. By unlocking critical resources such as processing power and memory from specific systems, and delivering them wherever and whenever they're required by dynamic business workloads, virtualization can make the infrastructure far more agile.

Furthermore, because hardware utilization can easily be scaled up, IT assets can create more business value while using less power and generating less heat.

One of the most powerful aspects of IBM's vision of virtualization is that the same argument applies to far more than just server virtualization. IBM can help organizations virtualize many other resources as well—rendering them on demand in a much more fluid manner than they do at present.

Storage, for instance, can be virtualized across an entire data center instead of tied to specific systems. Client desktops, once virtualized, will generate lower user support costs, simplified management, and much greater organizational flexibility. Even entire Java application environments, key to many IT services, can be virtualized.

By virtualizing and consolidating resources in a tailored fashion that closely matches their specific contexts, organizations can improve their service levels, reduce their costs, and proactively mitigate many forms of business risk. And no single IT solution provider is as well positioned as IBM to help them do it.

Economics

In a gloomy and unpredictable business climate such as we face today, it's important to be sure that every dollar invested in IT—both operations and development—delivers the best possible ROI. Yet in many cases, that's far from easy to accomplish.

Typically, this is because IT didn't evolve in accordance with the terms of an overarching plan, but on an ad hoc basis to fulfill the particular needs and goals of the organization at any given point in time. And as infrastructures have become more complex, involving more processes, applications, systems, solutions, and operational teams, the overall management challenge has multiplied in parallel. So have the costs.

Today, many organizations spend two-thirds or more of the overall IT budget on operations, and only a third on development. Ideally, however, that ratio would be reversed. This would give them the power to focus far more resources on innovative new services designed to meet emerging customer demand, increase market share, and generate new revenue—all of which, added up, would create tremendous business value.

This special interest area will explore exactly those complexities in a wide variety of different contexts, yet with the consistent overarching theme of maximizing IT ROI.

Cloud

Cloud architectures are the single hottest topic in enterprise IT today. The promise of clouds is a seductive one: to leverage virtualization and automation at such a deep level, entire services can be managed automatically by technology, from cradle to grave, without requiring direct oversight from IT at all.

And thanks to the incredible speed and consistency with which those services are delivered and managed, overall operational costs can also often plummet.

Ensuring that clouds deliver on that impressive potential, though, means taking many complexities into account. Organizations, for example, will need to weigh carefully just what kind of cloud they'll need—public, private, or hybrid? Located onsite, or hosted offsite at a service provider? Will line-of-business managers require a dedicated Web portal to the cloud to create services? And how, given such a cloud, should they integrate it with the existing infrastructure?

In every case, it will be critical to make choices designed to best fulfill the specific needs and operational context of the services the cloud will deliver.

Energy Management

Going green is more than a goal; today it's a mandate.

For enterprise IT in particular, energy costs represent the fastest-growing class of costs overall in the data center—and many of today's data centers were simply not designed to support the energy demands they now face. The result is that, all too often, data centers have reached a tipping point. Green solutions and management paradigms will be required to keep core IT services up and running and generating business value as intended.

Adding to this pressure, of course, is the fact that energy consumption has an additional cost in the form of carbon dioxide generation. And CO2 is a major culprit of a problem we all share: global warming.

Organizations that go green, then, can accomplish far more than just benefit themselves. They can also benefit their customers; the less money is spent on energy costs, the more money is available for strategic development intended to fulfill customer demands.

Finally, via reduced carbon footprints, green organizations can benefit, in a very real sense, the world as a whole—a clear illustration of what IBM has in mind when it talks about smarter computing for a smarter planet.

Midsize Business

Attendees from mid-market, growing organizations may find that their particular context is slightly different from that of enterprise attendees. In particular, cost control is often an exceptionally important issue; the goal of achieving more from IT, using less, has even more relevance.

Fortunately, Pulse 2011 will feature a rich selection of sessions well suited to the needs of the mid-market. This special interest area will explore such different IT topics as security, storage, service availability, process automation, cloud, asset management, and more—all with an eye to getting the best possible utilization from the available resources.

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