In my column last week, I explained the great importance of communicating quickly and clearly to business stakeholders both during and after an outage. That can be a challenging prospect in situations where you and your team are so caught up in fixing the problem that you don't have time to keep the rest of the organization up to date. It's even worse when you simply don't have anything to tell them yet. Although sometimes it's simply necessary, nobody likes to say, "I don't know what's wrong," when systems are down and productivity is hindered.
Reliably knowing what the source of or resolution to an unexpected outage is in its early minutes requires a lot of planning and forethought. At first, that might seem illogical. After all, can you really plan for the unplanned?
As it turns out, you can. All it requires is giving yourself the right tools to work with. Tracking a complex problem to its source almost always requires a substantial amount of information. The trick is making sure the information is available to you any time you need it, and it's easy to search and correlate. To do so, you need monitoring systems in place to record and ensure that those systems are set up correctly and carefully maintained.