Service Orchestration: Optimize Your IT Environment for Greater Efficiency

what_is_service_orchestrationLooking to optimize the way your entire IT environment runs? As organizations turn to cloud services, maintaining visibility and control across all applications and systems has become a new challenge for IT teams. Traditional job scheduling worked great when most systems were on premises. But as IT teams employ more and more cloud-based services, service orchestration has entered the scene to keep up with changing environments and automate cloud-based and hybrid IT workflows. 

Service orchestration goes a step beyond simple job scheduling to streamline, optimize, and bring greater efficiency to your IT environment, no matter where your services are run. Whether you’re a cloud native organization or a hybrid environment, learn the benefits of service orchestration and how it can transform your IT workflows and bring your infrastructure—including on-premises and cloud-based resources—together.

What is Service Orchestration? 

Service orchestration is technology designed to centralize IT workflows by expanding automation capabilities to cloud-based services and shift from time-bound scheduling to event-driven automation. Using a service orchestration and automation platform (SOAP), organizations can better design and implement workload automation workflows that orchestrate the entirety of their IT environment—including hybrid infrastructure. 

Much like workload orchestration, service orchestration goes beyond basic job scheduling and batch processing to monitor and manage jobs, scripts, and workloads to include SaaS and cloud-based services. Using a SOAP, users can orchestrate and monitor their IT environment through a central console to improve efficiency, reliability, and cost-effectiveness. Service orchestration eliminates the need for native and legacy scheduling tools that are platform-specific by providing a single pane of glass that orchestrates tasks across your entire infrastructure. 

6 Top Benefits of Service Orchestration 

Why embrace a service orchestration framework at your enterprise? Implementing a SOAP will take you to the next level of job scheduling and transform your IT environment by giving you these six big benefits: 

  1. Greater Efficiency
    Service orchestration brings all your  scripts, jobs and workflows together in a single pane of glass to ensure they all  run at their most efficient—no matter the platform. From cloud service orchestration to on-premises, a SOAP brings greater value to your applications and systems through integration. 
  2. Increase Flexibility and Scalability
    Service orchestration grows as your IT environment grows. A SOAP gives you the flexibility to orchestrate your environment on your schedule and dependencies. And they provide a cost-effective way to scale thanks to the ability to replicate your automation through multiple departments across your entire enterprise. 
  3. Enable Agility
    With complex IT environments, many challenges often arise from internal and external sources—whether you’re standing up new infrastructure or looking to meet SLAs. Service orchestration helps prepare your team to meet these challenges and better respond to change with greater resilience. 
  4. Support DevOps
    Service orchestration can bring sanity to DevOps by providing a more efficient way to standardize practices between IT and development teams. A SOAP can act as a single source of truth for all your automation and provides source control, versioning, and support for multiple environments.  
  5. Optimize Resources and Reduce Costs
    Service orchestration optimizes resources to ensure your jobs and workflows are running at the optimal times to help lighten the load on your environment, while being able to work around the clock.   
  6. Promote Innovation
    By automating and streamlining tedious, repetitive processes, IT orchestration frees up your staff to keep their focus on more value-adding tasks. By orchestrating workflows, your team gets more time back in their day to finally get back to innovative projects that can bring more value to your business.

6 Real-Life Service Orchestration Examples 

Take a look at how these companies embraced a service orchestration framework by implementing a SOAP through workload automation. 

  • Global real estate logistics leader Prologis turned to service orchestration to create a more optimized approach to data management. They created a new data warehouse and data lake that enabled self-service business intelligence and automated reporting. Read the Case Study > 
  • The Golf Warehouse deployed service orchestration as a more efficient way to streamline order processing between their cloud-based tools, ERP system, and warehouse system. Their ability to orchestrate workflows in a single console reduced the manual hours needed to connect jobs on different platforms. Read the Case Study > 
  • Energy company Seminole Electric used a service orchestration framework on a chain of dependencies across their environment to optimze cross-platform tasks and jobs throughout their enterprise. With their SOAP, they were also able to eliminate batch processing scheduling conflicts. Read the Case Study > 
  • Service orchestration helped a financial services firm move from siloed scheduling solutions into a single pane of glass that allows them to put dependencies on different jobs between different systems, including Teradata, Apache Hadoop, and Snowflake cloud solutions. Read the Case Study > 
  • Shark Ninja, an appliance manufacturer, used service orchestration through workload automation to give them a single pane of glass that provides greater control and visibility over ETL processes, imports and exports, and data refreshes across their IT environment. Read the Case Study >  
  • To minimize downtime and better orchestrate task timelines, like JD Edwards processing, automotive chemicals company Gold Eagle implemented IT orchestration to improve efficiency throughout their entire enterprise. Read the Case Study >  

6 Best Practices for Service Orchestration 

To see the greatest benefits from service orchestration, your SOAP should enable the following six best practices to ensure you’re getting the most out of IT orchestration: 

  1. Workflow Orchestration
    Orchestrating all workflows in your IT environment is the most crucial element of service orchestration. You should be able to easily design workflows across applications, platforms, and other systems with interdependencies no matter if they’re in-cloud or on-prem.  
  2. Event-Driven Automation
    Shifting from time-based to event-based automation is key when implementing service orchestration throughout your enterprise. With event-based triggers, get more control over your workflows by basing them on clearly defined events that are automatically triggered when an event occurs to increase reliability. 
  3. Self-Service Automation
    Enabling users outside of IT to manage their own processes through self-service automation—using role-based access to ensure security and visibility—frees up the plate of your team so you can focus on more strategic tasks instead of lower-level tasks for other users. 
  4. Monitoring and Alerting
    Maintaining visibility is of the utmost importance when embracing service orchestration. With monitoring and alerting capabilities, ensure your services, workloads, and scheduled jobs are running smoothly and if an issue arises, you’ll be able to troubleshoot immediately to maintain uptime. 
  5. Resource Provisioning
    Keep your resources running at optimal levels by ensuring correct provisioning and deprovisioning across both cloud and hybrid environments to optimize allocation based on demand. 
  6. Data Pipeline Management
    Data is the lifeblood of business operations. Service orchestration should keep that data flowing and managed effectively, from file transfers to ingesting multiple data streams. A SOAP should offer programmatic creation, scheduling, and monitoring of your data streams to easily integrate with other applications and systems across your enterprise. 

Getting Started: Implementing Service Orchestration in Your Organization 

Service orchestration is about more than just finding the right tool. To better orchestrate your workflows, you need to first create a winning automation strategy that will lead to a successful implementation. 

  • Define Your Orchestration Goals
    Start by defining what you’re trying to achieve with IT orchestration—whether that’s better integrating cloud solutions and services, optimizing resources, improving efficiency across your environment, cutting costs, or all the above. Then decide how you’re going to measure these goals. With your goals in mind, you can better shape your strategy. 
  • Assess Your IT Environment
    Take a close look at everything in your IT environment and how you’re currently operating. Try to spot the inefficiencies in the way you run batch processes, scripts, jobs, and other workloads. Also identify areas in your environment that are especially complex and note which services and applications are deployed in the cloud or on-premises—or both. This will help you find the best place to start with service orchestration. 
  • Rally Your Team
    Service orchestration will involve many key stakeholders across your IT department, as well as others across departments in your organizations. Finding the automation champions that know their processes well makes a huge difference when optimizing and orchestrating services. 
  • Think to the Future
    Your automation strategy should be future proofed so that it grows as you grow. When a new technology or application is added to your tech stack, it should be able to be easily integrated into your service orchestration framework. 

What the Future of Service Orchestration Holds 

By 2025, according to Gartner, “80 percent of organizations using workload automation tools will switch to Service Orchestration and Automation Platforms to orchestrate cloud-based workloads.” If you’re still using native job schedulers, or legacy tools, , now’s the time to embrace service orchestration. 

Service orchestration is designed to keep up with the constant changes being seen in modern business like more services using cloud and hybrid infrastructure, shrinking budgets and head count, and the need for greater security compliance. As companies look to stay agile and competitive, they’re turning to solutions that provide efficiency and scalability that can best handle new, more complicated processes in a cost-effective way. Here is how service orchestration can meet these challenges head on: 

  • Increasing Embrace of Cloud Computing
    Service orchestration in cloud computing will be essential as organizations continue to move resources and services to cloud-based applications and systems. Cloud service orchestration keeps up with workflows whether they’re fully in the cloud or hybrid. 
  • Smaller IT Budgets
    As organizations tighten their budgets, service orchestration has emerged as a compelling way to do more with less. IT teams can embrace service orchestration to streamline their tools and workflows and help eliminate tech sprawl. 
  • Higher Security and Compliance Standards
    Service orchestration tools provide a more controlled, safer environment that helps mitigate the threats of data breaches. Embracing a service orchestration framework can keep your data, workflows, and overall IT environment more secure and in compliance. 

Want to See What Service Orchestration Can Do for Your IT Environment? 

Get a personalized look at the service orchestration capabilities of Fortra’s JAMS. We’ll discuss your current IT environment, needs, and goals and share how you can embrace IT orchestration with JAMS.