The fine art of being an Invisible DBA Service

Jon Cowling 05-Feb-2016 15:29:33

The fine art of being an Invisible DBA Service

One of the challenges we have with operating a DBA Managed Service at DSP is actually perception management.

Our operational contacts within our clients have complete faith in us – our process to manage routine maintenance and incidents, the technical and interpersonal skills of our resources and the custom and industry tools we combine to manage an application or database such as Oracle Database, E-Business Suite or Microsoft SQL Server.

But on a few occasions senior contacts who do not have daily contact with DSP may forget the value or work we put into going above our contractual obligations. This is a natural occurrence that as an MSP we have to accept and manage.

The reason its natural is down to fact the better a DBA does his job the less visibility they have! A DBA service such as ours ensures databases are secure, recoverable, available and performant. DBAs who get noticed are often for the wrong reasons – because one of the above criteria is not being met.

This is why when we take-on a new client for a DBA managed service we check everything from the infrastructure (Server and Storage), to the Operating Systems, prod/test/DR/other non-prod environments, to the applications they serve and the interfaces that connect them.

Not only that we check and document key business processes – such as an ETL process to pull critical month-end data for board meetings or nightly batch process. We can tailor SLAs to specific processes to ensure such key events are never neglected.

So just to be sure CxOs and Directors don’t forget us at DSP we provide monthly statistics on the health of each database we support down to CPU performance and storage usage, to table space and latch times, to service management data such as number of incidents logged, SLA achievement and even total number of minutes/hours dedicated to each ticket.