Does Your I.T. Firm Track Thunderstorms Too?

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Sometimes it takes Mother Nature to unearth the depth and breadth of the capabilities of your I.T. firm regardless of your business or organization's size - a serious thunderstorm shows serious I.T. management.

Rainfall Totals for June 18, 2010

This was amazing! 10 years ago we would have been waiting by the phone to hear from clients once the storm had passed them; we’d have no idea what was coming next. - Matt Bartels, Agility Networks, Inc.

On Friday, June 18 2010, Chicago-based Agility Networks, an outsourced I.T. provider for small- and mid-sized businesses, watched and monitored a major thunderstorm that moved across the state of Illinois that afternoon.

The interesting way in which Agility monitored the storm and their client’s I.T. systems exemplifies what businesses want, and what I.T. firms can now deliver – a constant, never-ending vigil on system status.

“This was amazing! 10 years ago we would have been waiting by the phone to hear from clients once the storm had passed them; we’d have no idea what was coming next.”, said Matt Bartels, the Manager of the Agility Managed Services Department, “now, we’re notified of just about everything that goes on, the client doesn’t have to even pick up the phone!”

Friday’s storm proved that – Agility’s management center for over 3,500 devices at nearly 200 locations reported serious problems for multiple clients and read like a train schedule for the storm’s track:

Aurora, IL : 3:41pm
Schaumburg, IL : 3:57pm
Hinsdale, IL : 3:49pm
Elmhurst, IL : 4:03pm
Des Plaines, IL : 4:08pm
Chicago: 4:25pm
Burr Ridge : 4:31pm
South East Side : 4:35pm

Agility’s Management Platform(referred to as “AMP” to their clients) was still online as it was built to be (located in a secure, hardened, co-location facility) and delivering its never-ending stream of information to Mr. Bartels and all the consultants and clients of Agility. Mr. Bartels watched this unfold and managed things from his Wisconsin office and used the resources of AMP to track the path of the storm, by reviewing the power/Internet outage data from clients in the storm’s path. With so many power interruptions, there was plenty of data to confirm what the weather radar was showing.

Dan Lapish, the Operations Manager at Agility Networks, said “This simply shows how advanced things have become – in the past, I would have been waiting for the other shoe to drop for an entire week – especially since this happened on a Friday when some clients have already started their weekend. This just proves it should be a whole lot easier for everyone involved to sleep at night knowing their I.T. systems are awake - even when you’re up against a foe like Mother Nature.”

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