KPI #4: CPU Utilization

Just as memory utilization is a key indicator of server health and performance, CPU utilization is another solid means of managing your server farm. This indicator shows the % of time a server is running tasks and is not idle. CPU utilization can be the first indicator you track as CTO, as it yields crucial information about overall server performance issues or improvements. Added to this is the ability to track this indicator across all of your servers, coupled with an overall benchmark of how the server farm is performing as a whole. Your custom dashboard will be quite useful here, allowing you to control the level of detail you wish to monitor.

In addition to providing a high-level picture of server farm health, CPU utilization is connected to other important metrics (e.g. power consumption). If you find that your servers are running above 90%, each percentage point increase above this already high indicator could cost your company quite a bit extra in the electricity department. Therefore, it’s best to keep an eye on server CPU utilization rates and if the percentage remains high, it could be time to purchase a new piece of hardware or call in a consultant.

 

KPI #5: Server Performance per Watt

As we hinted at earlier, server performance can also be gauged by your company’s electricity bills. Because your server farm needs to be climate controlled to protect system integrity, electricity costs are already going to be high. It’s crucial that your servers are housed in an intelligently designed space, with a robust reporting system that can hone in on specific metrics such as temperature fluctuations and humidity. However, looking at the key indicator of server performance per watt of electricity consumed will help reveal any potential issues down the road.

If you find that the ratio for this indicator is trending downwards on a weekly or monthly basis, you may want to have a look at alternative energy options to power your server farm. Or, call your trusted energy company and inquire about options to help keep server performance and your bottom line on the up and up.

 

KPI #6: Disk Space and Memory Utilization

One of the most important aspects of managing server memory utilization is drawing distinctions between the types of memory or processes your company is running. Are you looking to monitor virtual memory? What about active memory? Each type could have a different benchmark, and it is best to decide whether your KPI will display average memory utilization overall or differentiate the types for a more granular level of reporting.

You also want to ensure that your current reporting system has the flexibility to display this critical data at a moment’s notice, as spikes in utilization could indicate that your servers have some unwanted visitors in the form of malware or viruses. Or it might be that one of your IT staff installed the latest computer game and is taking an extended break on the job. In either case, viewing these indicators will ensure you get to the bottom of the situation right away and remedy the problem at hand.

 

How to Excel in your Role as CTO/IT Admin

Monitoring these KPIs will jumpstart your role as CTO or IT admin and help you spot potential issues or areas for improvement every day. The six KPIs mentioned above could highlight additional metrics to track areas of your business operations in greater detail. So, the next time you think about adding additional hardware as your business continues to grow, maybe it’s time to schedule a consultation for a more robust IT reporting system. We’d be happy to customize one for your specific business needs, saving you time and maximizing your company’s overall health.