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EDF UK deploys Riverbed’s Alluvio Aternity to tackle IT issues

Monitoring software links into ServiceNow and PowerShell scripts are being used to automate remediation

UK energy provider EDF has deployed Alluvio Aternity from Riverbed to improve the digital customer experience across its corporate, consumer and generation business units. The software is being used to help EDF UK to optimise how business-critical applications run on end-user devices.

The energy provider began using Alluvio Aternity in its contact centres to monitor the end-user experience of its applications. The tool provides metrics from devices, applications and the network into a single-view dashboard.

The real-time insight into the status of EDF applications and networks is helping EDF’s IT department to troubleshoot challenges with the end-user experience, such as poor performance of transaction processing. One example is with the billing system. EDF’s IT team used Alluvio Aternity to identify that more than 1,000 machines had a version of Adobe installed that caused the machine to crash when a bill was opened.

EDF UK has also used Aternity to assess the workflows and devices that were slowest-performing and needed to be replaced. The information provided by the tool has enabled the company to identify devices that needed updating. It has also been able to validate the improvements made through such hardware upgrades.

For instance, IT used Aternity to identify that there were persistent memory issues slowing down device performance. Looking at the Aternity system memory report, the IT team discovered that 3,000 devices were using more than 70% of the physical memory they had installed. This helped the IT team to take a different route for improving the memory of all devices.

Alluvio Aternity is being integrated with EDF’s ServiceNow Incident Management service management software. When a device triggers an alert, the integration memes that ServiceNow is able to collect reveal real-time data from Aternity. EDF has created 21 alerts, including nine system alerts and eight application alerts for hardware. The alerts flag, for example, whether staff have operating system crashes, battery wear issues, or low disk space.

Microsoft PowerShell scripts are being used in Aternity to run automatic remediation actions on end-user monitored devices. According to EDF, these remediation actions reduce the number of helpdesk tickets and improve user experiences by identifying and fixing issues remotely before they escalate.

One of these scripts is fired if Aternity detects that a computer has not been rebooted for five days and triggers an alert for the user. If the user does not reboot after seven days, the remediation action automatically restarts the device. EDF said that, on average, these actions have saved users 14 minutes of their time, and the support team 15 minutes per incident. 

Donna Lloyd, senior enterprise product manager, platforms and enablement, enterprise IT at EDF, said the company began using Alluvio Aternity to help it fix IT problems more quickly by understanding what was behind latency issues. This has now evolved into monitoring devices and actively looking for problem, she said.

“With Riverbed’s technology, we have completely transformed the way we manage IT challenges,” said Lloyd. “We have moved from being reactive to pre-emptive and now proactive. As a result, Alluvio Aternity has changed how IT is perceived as a department and has ultimately given IT staff the tools they need to serve our customers better.”

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