ManageEngine, makers of the IT360 integrated management solution, has created a web extension for the iPad. I recently looked at a live demo and was impressed, because it takes full advantage of the iPad's mobility and screen real estate. More importantly, IT staff who are mobile can help improve response times and foster better relationships with customers, because they don't have to be tethered to a desk, monitoring ticket queues and alarms.
IT management from an iPad
When you think about it, the time is right to extend IT management tools like ManageEngine IT360 to the iPad. The technology is now here -- the new iPad's retina display, processor speed, 3G/4G capability, and Wi-Fi networking can bring a lot of power and flexibility to the mobile worker that was formerly the purview of a desktop or laptop PC.
Currently, IT360 for iPad is free to existing ManageEngine IT360 customers. It has an HTML 5-optimized interface that enables IT managers and their staff to perform the following critical functions:
- Review alarms from their infrastructure, including networks, servers, and applications (Figure A)
- Take snapshots of their infrastructure's current health (Figure B)
- Gain insight into the health and availability of key business services
- Open and close trouble tickets
- Monitor SLA agreements (not available yet in the live demo)
- Search through IT360 data with the search feature
Review critical alarms from your iPad anytime, anywhere with the IT360 web extension for the iPad.Figure B
The Infrastructure Snapshot provides an overview of your infrastructure's availability and health.
IT360 for iPad also includes a new self-diagnostic tool to help improve product reliability and reduce downtime. Users will be able to see a visual representation of their enterprise infrastructure as a topology map, which is especially great for support staff and technicians who are dispatched to repair equipment.
Simplify business management views from the iPadIt's not just IT managers who need to monitor enterprise operations, as business managers are increasingly wanting their own IT management view. IT360 for iPad lets even non-technical business managers view the availability and health of the business services under their purview (Figure C). Tapping a business service opens a pop-up message with the status of the resource. Figure C
The IT360 Business Services view is broken down by name, availability, health, and today's availability.
Another benefit of the IT360 Business Services view is that with only a little bit of training and perhaps alterations to existing IT management policies and procedures, IT staff and management no longer have to trip over each other to get access to business-level information. Instead of an executive having to request reports that take time for the IT department to produce, an organization using ManageEngine IT360 could set up the IT360 web extension for the iPad on the executive's iPad, and as long as they have network access, they can tap into the Business Services view without having to request help from the IT staff.
The future of IT management is mobility
ManageEngine's release of IT360 for iPad should spark the creation of more IT management tools to tablets. Mobile devices are permeating all facets of business and IT, so it's about time that IT management solutions join the party.
In fact, in a discussion I had with Raj Sabhlok, president of ManageEngine, he mentioned that his company is embarking on a mobile first strategy for future releases of their IT management solutions, which means its developers will optimize user interfaces for mobile devices (like the iPad) during the development phase.
While the laptop, VPN, and broadband freed the IT manager from needing to be in the office to respond to emergencies, IT360 for iPad speaks to a more mobile future, where IT managers and technicians can enjoy faster response times and increased mobility to benefit their own projects and working styles.
Will Kelly is a freelance technical writer and analyst currently focusing on enterprise mobility, Bring Your Own Device (BYOD), and the consumerization of IT. He has also written about cloud computing, Big Data, virtualization, project management applications, Google Apps, Microsoft technologies, and online collaboration for TechRepublic and other sites. Will also works as a contract technical writer for clients in the Washington, DC area and nationwide. Follow Will on Twitter: @willkelly.