Leading Financial Maximizes NETSCOUT Service Edge Monitoring Across Multi-National Operations
- Hybrid workforce and digital transformation created new service edge visibility challenges
- Remote office visibility revealed emerging financial application performance issues
- nGeniusONE® Service Assurance platform
- InfiniStreamNG® smart visibility sources
- Returned premium service delivery to investors, reliable end-user experience for employees
- Maximized ROI, improved visibility, bridged cross-IT operations issues with single-vendor NETSCOUT® approach
This company has provided trusted financial services guidance to their institutional and individual investors for nearly a century. Even in a challenging global service delivery environment, the company expanded financial operations across the COVID-19 period through a mix of organic growth and strategic acquisitions.
For years, information technology (IT) “power users” have assured data center and network services performance by using NETSCOUT for real-time monitoring of business services in use at on-premises office locations.
Business expansion and remote workforce transitions had combined to create service edge visibility gaps that the IT team had to reconcile to return business service reliability to thousands of investment professionals distributed across a vast work-from-home (WFH) geography. These service edges included:
- Client edges, where expanded virtual private network (VPN) and Citrix Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI) deployments supported thousands of financial services professionals who had moved from corporate facilities to WFH environments. IT had earlier configured these VPN and VDI deployments in the pre-pandemic time frame, when the remote worker base was not as large and dynamic as their current-day WFH population. As a result, even veteran IT professionals experienced difficulties in both visualizing this client edge and assuring high-quality end-user experience in WFH environments.
- Network edges, which had expanded to include a corporate network added through an acquisition that needed to be merged with the company’s infrastructure. Of additional relevance, users at one remote financial office had engaged Help Desk resources about sluggish application performance at this on-premises facility. Further, IT had added on-premises Wi-Fi network segments at other corporate facilities during the remote workforce transition that had not been performance-tested. Absent visibility and load testing, there were concerns regarding how well the enhanced Wi-Fi network would perform when employees returned to corporate offices.
- Data center service edges, which included an expanding mix of Equinix Co-located (Co-lo) facilities and an evolving on-premises operation.
Separate from these service edge concerns, the IT team was charged by increased executive leadership interest to gain better visibility into the company’s market data feeds environment. As a trusted advisor to the financial services industry and their client investors, the IT team needed to ensure the company was receiving timely, accurate, secure intelligence from these third-party market feeds. An additional IT request involved supporting a Security Operations need to leverage network packet capture to enhance their forensic analysis activities.
While these were mounting challenges that IT had to face, there were real-world business impacts associated with all of them. If left unresolved, it was only a matter of time until WFH users or remote resources would be unable to provide the personalized, high-level financial services their customers had come to expect from this industry leader.
Solution in Action
When it came time to address these challenges, IT leadership looked to a familiar business partner to assist them — NETSCOUT. As part of expanding this long-time relationship to address new business demands, NETSCOUT representatives and IT leadership focused their dialog on identifying company remote locations that were perhaps deficient in network bandwidth and application visibility. Using this approach, to a large degree, the IT leadership was able to leverage already-deployed NETSCOUT investments to address service edge visibility and end-user experience issues, as well as iteratively add InfinStreamNG (ISNG) smart visibility instrumentation and nGeniusONE licensing to address the application performance concerns that had emerged in one remote office.
While there was a diverse collection of service edge visibility issues at hand, IT had the distinct advantage of arriving at solutions that simply extended nGeniusONE single-pane-of-glass performance views and troubleshooting workflows that had been long established. In this manner, the company’s IT power users:
- Expanded their infrastructure monitoring approach to holistically visualize their expanded service edge environment, whether issues were occurring at the remote edge, network, or data center service edges.
- Relied on the nGeniusONE analysis of quality of service (QoS) markings that had been trusted by IT for many years to pinpoint whether an issue in this end-to-end service environment involved a network or WFH environment concern (which enabled them to reconcile VPN/ VDI performance in WFH environments), a problem in the expanded Wi-Fi environment, or troubles with the unified communications environment supporting all employees.
- Addressed application performance issues reported by their remote office employees by deploying an ISNG 2600 appliance that was purpose-built to capture network traffic packets at the remote network edge for real-time conversion into NETSCOUT smart data. IT then leveraged this smart data in nGeniusONE service dashboard and service monitor workflows to quickly close out Help Desk tickets.
For the IT team, part of these successes involved staying engaged with NETSCOUT developments made to help enterprises address issues that had become magnified during the global hybrid workforce transition. In this fashion, IT could quickly use specialized nGeniusONE monitors, including those for VPN and Market Feed services, that were ready-made for real-time analysis of those environments.
The ability to use NETSCOUT service edge visibility to monitor hop-by-hop application, network, and UC transaction processing had never been more valuable to this IT team than during the company’s hybrid workforce transition.
Additional NETSCOUT returns on investment were realized by turning to a single vendor to address these collective service edge visibility challenges, with nGeniusONE offering an integrated solution for real-time monitoring across any service or any location, for any user.
The company’s ability to overcome these service delivery obstacles without adversely impacting their investor community may be the biggest reward for continued reliance on NETSCOUT.