E-Handbook:

Manage alerts without getting overwhelmed by nonstop warnings

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Don't let alert management harangue you around the clock

IT administrators want to know what's going on with their systems. If a piece of equipment is on the verge of shutdown or data is not flowing into the cloud, admins need to understand the specifics as soon as possible so they can solve the problem.

What admins don't want is a false red-alert warning that arrives just after they brush their teeth and lie down to watch the late-night news.

There needs to be a balance here. Proper alert management means, first and foremost, that alerts need to go to the right people. And no one wants a boy-that-screamed-wolf situation, leaving the IT department with a delayed response to a severe problem.

Yet some businesses use dozens of IT management tools. Some organizations bring these tools under one umbrella, such as systems management product BigPanda, to standardize alerts and actions. This is a good first step to reduce the number of alerts, as well as to simplify them and improve response times.

In this handbook, Clive Longbottom suggests admins can find a middle ground for alert management to get only the warnings they need at the time they need them. Use automation to filter and analyze the data before an alert is sent. With the right filter, information won't just go to another data repository. An automated analysis that produces a color-coded chart ensures that time isn't wasted on meaningless data or with a report that admins need to read as if it was War and Peace.

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