I've been writing a series of posts on EMC's Adaptivity technology. In my last post I discussed the concept of projecting applications onto different elements of the business value chain (BVC). For example, the diagram below highlights a variety of different applications (e.g. CRM, Financial Reporting, etc) and their underlying mapping to the BVC.
The theory of best-fit application placement introduced in the last post is quite nicely described by Sheppard Narkier:
While each workload is typically viewed as unique by their owners or creators, our experience has shown that the large class of enterprise workloads exhibit behavioral patterns that can be classified into a small number of consumption types (we have found less than 10). Characterizing these types of demand consumption is critical to consistently managing a complex environment that ensures optimal value in terms of cost, efficiency and the quality of the user experience.
In other words, most applications can be placed on the best-fit (and therefore most cost efficient) infrastructure with a pattern-based understanding of the processing needs demanded by an application.
The diagram below introduces the BVC Information Cycle. The beauty of the Information Cycle is that it overlays the five elements of the business value chain.
If you project any application onto any of the five underlined areas (Marketing & Sales, Service, Internal Operations, Inbound Logistics, Outbound Logistics), that application by default becomes associated with a certain class of processing.
Consider, for example, a market-facing application that communicates the brand of the company. The brand can't experience significant downtime. This application would be associated with the Marketing & Sales aspect of a business, and therefore associated with the Market Context Processing information cycle. Being associated with this type of processing means that the application likely adheres to a well-known pattern. Sheppard explains it as follows:
Another consideration for platform design is high scalability and availability for mission critical applications, where planned downtime is rare. Applications that exhibit unpredictable spikes in demand are usually characterized as mission critical and are often market facing. These applications are the face of an organization and therefore unreliability profoundly affects the brand. Demand spikes must be handled seamlessly, requiring an operating environment that has an elastic resource pool technical capability.
It is therefore a reasonable starting point to assume that any "Marketing & Sales" application should consume supply-side elastic IT resources. This may not be true for every Marketing & Sales application but it is a solid starting point.
What are some of the well-known demand-side patterns that are associated with these information cycles?
I will take a look at this question in an upcoming post.