By Paul Lavery, Director, Product Line for Managed File Transfer (MFT), Axway
Visibility is within MFT DNA
A key feature of any MFT solution is visibility. Organizations continue to invest in improved visibility solutions for their MFT. These investments include scaling the visibility solution to meet growing needs, ease of use and in self-service. Allowing business users to self serve their needs regarding file transfer status has been a popular project to create savings and improve service to the business.
Up to date MFT solution generates quantity of events
The investment in scaling visibility solutions is driven by the ever-increasing volume of files and the number of discrete events that are recorded for each file along its journey. Recording these ever-growing volumes of events can be a challenge. However, an even bigger challenge is providing useful information from the evergrowing event data.
Some stop with collection of events …
The ability to correlate the event data generated by file transfers and to include external event data from other business processes is the challenging part of providing visibility to the MFT solution. Events get delivered to the event database, but are typically recorded in a “as received” order. Meaning that events are not sorted according to time they occurred or by process or file transfer that they are associated with. It is the challenge of the visibility tool to create order out of what seems to be a pool of random events.
Reacting to issues is out dated in the customer experience era
Once you have done this, you have a solid visibility tool for answering questions like “where is my file?” or “what is the state of my transfer?” If you can push access to the visibility tool out to the business users, you would also have self-service visibility. However, whether these tools are being used by IT administrators or relationship managers in the business, this is a reactive tool supporting a reactive process. Users and admins are using the visibility tool when they are researching a problem or are receiving an alert when approaching a static SLA deadline.
Introducing MFT Analytics
Taking visibility to the next level is what MFT analytics is all about. Current visibility tools allow us to research a transfer status and alarm on static thresholds. The next step is to learn from the event history; learn what we should expect as far as transfer volumes and partner activity on a particular day or hour. It is being able to organize events on a timeline to be able to replay a high traffic day or a day where things fell apart to better understand how to avoid having the outage reoccur in the future.
With MFT analytics you can move from reactive questions like “where is my partners file?” to proactive questions like “how is my partner performing with their transfers today versus a typical Monday in May?” This allows you as a relationship manager or MFT administrator to get in front of a potential problem before it occurs. You can now test Embedded Analytics for SecureTransport.