©2012 Enterprise Management Associates, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

EMA Radar™ for Workload Automation (WLA): Q2 2012

Report Summary


In today’s age of cloud and IT-as-a-Service, the importance of Workload Automation (WLA) as

the evolution of job scheduling, and its sister discipline IT Process Automation (ITPA), has grown

tremendously. As a new chapter opens in enterprise IT, where business-unaware technology silos no longer

count as a valid excuse for SLA violations1, the ENTERPRISE MANAGEMENT ASSOCIATES®

(EMA™) team regards automation WLA and ITPA as the glue that keeps business processes tightly

integrated. Operating systems, middleware, databases, applications, and business services are simply

technical necessities that must be orchestrated to support and streamline these business processes in the

most efficient manner.

While this EMA Radar™® Report is focused on WLA solutions, the integration of these individual

software packages with ITPA constitutes an important evaluation criterion, as the separation of both

disciplines –WLA and ITPA– is an artificial one. To truly automate entire business processes, WLA and

ITPA have to work together harmonically.

a) WLA is commonly considered an activity that takes place deep in the data center, controlled

by an inner circle of aging mainframe wizards, also often referred to by business stakeholders

as “the data center mafia.” The data center mafia usually knows very little about the business

impact of WLA and is notorious for only contacting business stakeholders to let them know

why a certain request cannot be fulfilled in a timely manner.

b) ITPA, often also referred to as run book automation, can be described as the automated

execution of a set of tasks to address a specific planned or unplanned situation. All the

various steps that have to be taken for processes such as staff onboarding, application release

management, or weekly backups fall under ITPA.

Since the previous EMA Workload Automation Radar Report in 2010, most vendors have recognized

the above requirement to integrate WLA and ITPA in order to effectively support business processes.

Research Methodology

The major challenge of this type of market evaluation is to avoid creating a simple feature comparison.

EMA is aware that in order to be valuable for the end customer, any analyst report must thoroughly

research and consider the client perspective. Enterprise IT is generally about solving actual customer

challenges. Therefore, each software feature is only relevant for this report, if it solves a specific and

important business problem.

To remain entirely objective, this EMA Radar Report is based on a comprehensive survey with over

600 data points that can, for the most part, be measured unambiguously. All survey questions were

founded on customer feedback and vendor responses, and thoroughly verified by a sequence of product

demonstrations and end customer interviews.

EMA acknowledges that in WLA, as well as in most other arenas of enterprise IT, there is no one best

solution for every customer. Therefore, EMA has evaluated each product along five dimensions:

1. Functionality

4. Cost

2. Architecture & Integration

5. Vendor Strength

3. Deployment & Administration


Service Level Agreement - For more detail on the importance of SLAs, please take a look at the following article:



©2012 Enterprise Management Associates, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

EMA Radar™ for Workload Automation (WLA): Q2 2012

Report Summary

Based on these five dimensions, a potential client might select a solution that offers only average scores

in terms of functionality, but is easily deployed, requires minimal maintenance, and costs significantly

less than some of the functionality leaders.

Providing guidance along these five dimensions will enable potential clients to determine which

solutions to look at more closely. This can mean narrowing down the field to only three vendors, or it

could mean to also include lower cost alternatives into the RFP process. This report will have achieved

its purpose, if EMA has provided the potential WLA customer with the background knowledge and guidance

necessary to confidently make this pre-selection decision.

What Changed Since the Q1 2010 Workload

Automation Radar

The previous EMA Workload Automation Radar Report was released in the first quarter of 2010

based on data gathered throughout Q4 of 2009 – and revealed the following key findings:

State of the Discipline in 2010

Many vendors had achieved excellent job scheduling capabilities, but only few were able to offer

even basic ITPA and business integration capabilities.2 No vendor was able to include advanced

SLA-capabilities that were driven by predictive analytics algorithms and able to autonomously manage

the critical path (see Figure 1).


Business integration is referred to as the ability to link IT services to business requirements (Business Impact Analysis).

EMA Radar™ for Workload Automation (WLA): Q2 2012

Report Summary

Figure 1: 2010 WLA Radar Findings

As Figure 1 shows, WLA in 2010 was still a long way away from being able to truly automate entire

processes. Technology silos, a lack of awareness of a workloads business impact, and a lack of predictive

analytics capabilities did not allow customers to achieve their ultimate goal of resource optimization

and agile IT services delivery.

Progress since 2010

When reevaluating the marketplace over two years later, significant progress can be seen compared to

the 2010 WLA Radar Report (see Figure 2). Cloud and the concept of service-driven IT were the main

catalysts for this progress.

Resource optimization: It is the main goal of any organization to receive the best possible ROI

from its IT investments. To realize this ROI, each physical resource has to be utilized to its optimal

degree and waste has to be eliminated. To achieve optimal usage, all storage, network, compute, and

software resources have to be pooled. Through pooling, these resources are abstracted from their

underlying physical infrastructure and therefore can be dynamically assigned to users almost in real

time. This ability to rapidly distribute enterprise IT resources based on near real-time requirements

brings the data center one important step closer to resource optimization.

IT Process Automation: Automatically provisioning, managing, and decommissioning hardware

and software resources, based on end user requests issued through a service portal ensures the

ultimate degree of IT agility. This agility allows the organization to turn IT into a true business

differentiator, by enabling end users to proactively utilize IT resources to the companys advantage.


©2012 Enterprise Management Associates, Inc. All Rights Reserved.


©2012 Enterprise Management Associates, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

EMA Radar™ for Workload Automation (WLA): Q2 2012

Report Summary

Business Integration: Since the 2010 Radar, there has been significant progress in terms of

integrating WLA products with the overall business management environment. Most vendors now

offer connectors for service management solutions, CMDBs, BI & Big Data packages, systems

management software, as well as for VMware vSphere and for the Amazon EC2 cloud. WLA

has come a long way from being an isolated discipline to becoming a “good citizen” that is well

integrated with its neighbors in the data center and in the cloud.

• Predictive Analytics: The fact that five out of this years six “Value Leaders” either offer their own

predictive analytics engine or integrate with Terma Software Labs’ JAWS3 analytics solution shows

the tremendous progress that was made in workload analytics since the last Radar Report. Vendors

have recognized that offering predictive analytics is a true differentiator for their products, as it is a

critical precondition for making WLA business process-aware.

Job Scheduling: Job scheduling already was mature at the time of the previous Radar Report.

However, EMA can still report minor improvements in terms of job triggers, alerting, and API

comprehensiveness this time around.

Figure 2: WLA Maturity in 2012


See page 14 for more detail on JAWS.


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