Office 365 has been adopted at a tremendous rate. In fact, in the April 2019 earnings call Microsoft reported that Office 365 had grown with around 4,15 million active users per month since November 2018. This brings the total amount of monthly active users to a whopping 180 million.
The fact that Office 365 has been so successful across such a wide range of customers is a testament to the technical and operational excellence of its products. However, as customers start their individual journeys to Office 365, there are some gaps in the portfolio of monitoring and management tools that the service offers, and it is important to know and understand what these are in order to make one’s own experience as smooth as possible.
New Challenges in a Cloud World
Traditional monitoring solutions focus almost entirely on the infrastructure supporting a specific service or application. While this approach proves relatively successful in a pure on-premises scenario, it is much less effective with cloud-based services. In an on-premises scenario, you typically have a full understanding of what each piece of the infrastructure is responsible for, what the relation is between components, and what “normal” behavior looks like for each component. When one component breaks or underperforms, you know what the impact will be on other components and the services depending on it.
The fundamental differences between how an on-premises application and cloud-based system are managed created a need for a different monitoring approach. This approach must focus on the service and functionality that is being delivered, as well as the tasks one executes to capture the true user experience. For example, in Exchange Online, one of the core tasks is the ability to send and receive email, whereas in SharePoint Online, being able to upload, download and edit documents is the most frequent task. While previous technologies may have been managed by separate, specialized teams, we see that these teams tend to converge, forcing administrators to be more up-to-date on technologies they may not be very familiar with.
Cloud-based systems, such as Office 365, enable organizations and users to work from virtually anywhere. Because of this, monitoring a service from a single location, typically the organization’s datacenter, no longer represents how applications are used in the real world. As users roam between various locations and connect from both within or outside the boundaries of the corporate network, it is important for an organization to understand if service issues are confined to a single location, or if an outage is affecting its operations at a larger scale –potentially even service-wide.
Without proper monitoring, and by relying solely on the built-in capabilities, administrators are often left to wait for feedback from their users to understand when something is wrong. This is far from ideal. Being able to pick up on early warnings of outages in any of the components within the infrastructure, including Office 365, is vital.
While Office 365 built in tools like the Service-Health- Dashboard (SHD) and the Azure AD Connect Portal do provide IT Pros with valuable information, they do have limitations. Download a FREE copy of the EBook to learn more about the monitoring gaps in Office 365 and how to mitigate them to improve your end users experience.
ENow has been a leader in Exchange, Hybrid and Office 365 monitoring and reporting technologies for 15 years, with hundreds of enterprise customers including Experian, Facebook, and VMWare. ENow customers manage over 550 million employees and our technologies help manage over 22 billion transactions a week.