– Craig McLellan, Chief Technology Officer of Hosting.com (http://www.hosting.com/), says:

More and more businesses are always on. They have expanded business into multiple time zones, operate online and are driving operations in an economic and competitive pressure cooker. Add to that the very nature of today’s IT environments – built on virtualized infrastructure and more often leveraging cloud computing via private, public and hybrid models – that are raising the stakes on business continuity and the need for an Always-On Design Framework.

An Always-On Designe Framework is all about improving availability and reliability, but it also closes the gap between application design and users’ needs, accelerates deployment, enables better support, improves budgeting and reins in costs. And an Always On architecture promotes agility, focus and alignment – all of which drives real business value.

To thrive, companies need to be agile. With an Always-On architecture that is highly available, flexible and reliable, enterprises can take advantage of reusable IT components in a service catalog, such as a specific business service, that can be quickly provisioned. With faster delivery of services, enterprises are more focused. They can save weeks of time in development, provisioning and training, boosting agility, cutting operational costs and achieving greater ROI. Enterprises are also better aligned, because an Always On architecture promotes regular evaluation, validation and prioritization of applications and services. That, in turn, aligns expectations and capabilities early in the design process. It also improves clarity, consistency and efficiency. But the real benefit is that users get what they need, and can then be more productive.

Building an architecture to support an Always On business can be done with an Always-On Design Framework, a proven method aimed at helping growing companies maintain agility and flexibility while ensuring measurable recovery for complex enterprise systems. All too often, businesses build systems and then retro-fit disaster recovery requirements, miss opportunities to leverage repeatable infrastructure that can increase expertise and drive economies of scale, and use non-iterative planning and execution, resulting in a lack of interaction with stakeholders that then drives gaps in expectations.

The Always-On Design Framework includes three key components: a service catalog enables the reuse and repeatability of operational components; alignment of design with actual stakeholder response; and integration with the Information Technology Infrastructure Library (ITIL). Such a framework, ultimately, will help enterprises derive real value from their IT systems and succeed in Always On business. Craig McLellan, Chief Technology Officer of Hosting.com, details the Always-On Design Framework in his new eBook, the “Essential Guide to Disaster Recovery & Business Continuity.”