Also known as ASM, application service management is a type of systems management that is aimed at enhancing the operation of different applications by considering the overall performance of those applications. Instead of focusing simply on a single application as a stand-alone aspect of a business transaction, application service management tends to look at a broader picture and determine how well different systems are working together in managing different aspects of that transaction. This approach means that even systems that only indirectly contribute to the success of the transaction are measured.
With application service management, a number of different components are taken into consideration. This includes the evaluation of all operating systems, hardware platforms, software applications, and network configurations and interconnects with other networks are all considered as part of this management strategy. Taking this broader approach also involves thoroughly understanding the stated goals of the business in terms of productivity, service delivery, and general expectations for turnaround on each task performed in the pursuit of those combined company expectations.
At the heart of application performance management is the assessment of how well each component within the system is performing, and how that performance impacts other components and moves the business forward in meetings its own internal expectations and the expectations of its clientele. This is somewhat different from other management processes that tend to focus in on a single aspect or component within the overall business process and evaluate or measure it alone. By taking this more holistic approach to the task, it is possible to determine how one application is affecting another, measure the impact of that effect, and determine if that is the best possible outcome in terms of meeting stated expectations.
The general process of application service management makes it easier to identify a weak link in the service delivery of a business, identify possible solutions to resolve that weakness, and then run simulations to determine the outcome of each one of those possible solutions. Doing so provides a better idea of whether the suggested plan of action will resolve one issue without creating another possibly more severe problem elsewhere in the overall process. If one potential solution is found to create additional issues elsewhere, a different solution may be considered, eventually identifying the most practical means of minimizing factors that negatively impact business processes and achieving the highest degree of productivity possible. From this perspective, application service management can be viewed as an essential tool in keeping a business healthy and capable of continually moving forward in meeting its own goals as well as providing satisfaction to its customers.