The pace of IT advancements is mind-boggling, right from handling IT service requests manually, organizations are using chatbots and virtual assistance to handle the request. However, these advancements also bring challenges. One big challenge is how to effectively handle increasingly complex tasks and workflows without breaking the bank.
Imagine trying to manually manage a growing web of servers and applications – it’s just not feasible. That’s where automation comes in. It’s the go-to solution for many successful businesses. But here’s the twist: it’s not just about automating individual tasks anymore. What’s needed is a way to automate and coordinate a whole bunch of tasks and configurations across entire groups of systems. This clever approach is called IT orchestration.
So, in a nutshell, it’s like getting an orchestra conductor for your IT operations, making sure all the instruments (or tasks) play in harmony across the entire system. In this blog, we will explore what IT orchestration is, how it is different from process automation and the benefits of using IT orchestration.
What is Driving Need for IT Orchestration?
Organizations are constantly striving to enhance cost-effectiveness and operational efficiency as they expand. IT Service Orchestration and Automation Platforms (SOAPs) offer the potential to deliver these improvements with a high degree of predictability and reliability.
Traditional job scheduling and workload automation tools have struggled to keep up with the rapidly evolving landscape of digital business. According to Gartner’s prediction, “By the end of 2025, approximately 80% of organizations that currently rely on workload automation will have adopted SOAPs to coordinate and manage workloads across both IT and business domains.”
While tactical IT automation has addressed immediate needs by reducing manual labor, associated errors, and expenses, SOAPs take automation a step further. They excel at orchestrating complex, event-driven workflows, both within the realm of IT and extending beyond it.
IT Automation vs Orchestration- What’s the Difference?
Automation and orchestration, while sharing the goal of reducing manual intervention, differ significantly in their scope and application within the realm of IT. Let’s delve deeper into these distinctions:
Automation, in its technical sense, refers to the execution of single, specific tasks by machines with minimal human involvement. Each isolated task that is automated represents an individual instance of automation. IT process automation has found success in various processes and activities, such as generating service tickets, incident response, IT compliance management, user provisioning, and integrating applications. When implemented effectively, IT automation can notably enhance the speed, precision, and efficiency of tasks that would otherwise demand significant time and effort.
In contrast, orchestration is essentially the scaling up of automation. It encompasses a broader scope, enabling organizations to automate and manage entire interconnected workflows, computing systems, services, and middleware within their IT environment. Orchestration is highly versatile and can be applied to distributed systems, whether they are in the cloud or on-premises.
Suppose an organization intends to orchestrate the creation of an active directory. In that case, they will construct an automated workflow that encompasses a series of interconnected tasks. These tasks might involve creating and modifying users, establishing groups, and other related actions. Orchestration can also ensure that automated tasks occur in a predefined sequence, making it especially valuable for complex processes.
Orchestration itself is a multifaceted undertaking that demands a comprehensive understanding of all the steps involved in the process to be orchestrated, as well as the ability to coordinate these steps across diverse environments. Nonetheless, if a process consists of repeatable, automatable tasks, it can be orchestrated to streamline and manage the entire workflow effectively.