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Big Brother and the role of Observability

By - 9 August 2023

Drawing parallels between reality TV show Big Brother and the gambling industry, Guy Warren, CEO at software provider ITRS Group, explains why operators should always have full observability of their infrastructure.

The popular reality TV show, Big Brother, is set to make its return later this year and will once again capture the attention of viewers across the globe.

The show’s success has relied on the voyeuristic pleasure viewers derive from watching contestants’ every move. To a large extent, the concept behind Big Brother can be a lesson for businesses that heavily rely on IT infrastructure to fuel their operations.

Although Big Brother may seem like a far-off idea with little relevance to the gambling industry, the popularity of the show is driven by the fact you can observe people’s every move, and this feature is what is relevant in the world of IT monitoring systems. Similar to how viewers observe contestants’ actions, monitoring and observability allows IT teams to gain real-time insights into the internal workings of a software system.

Monitoring provides valuable insights into the inner workings of a firm’s digital systems, and by monitoring systems we can see how minor issues can escalate to crisis situations. This is much like how viewers are enthralled by the constant surveillance of the show’s contestants and their ability to see how tensions between one another can result in ‘crisis’ moments in the Big Brother house.

Observability further provides the capability to monitor, diagnose, and optimise the performance of a software system effectively, which in the world of gambling, where ensuring that services are always on, is imperative to meet customer expectations.

Embracing ‘always on’

With an ‘always on’ approach you ensure system uptime and avoid customers being unable to access systems. For gambling firms, downtime can prove fatal – if a customer is unable to access services from one operator, there are hundreds of competitors waiting and ready to pick up their custom and serve their needs.

Ensuring always on services goes beyond reactive approaches, however. To ensure round the clock services firms need to emphasise proactive vigilance, ensure real-time insights into system performance, potential risks, and customer experience.

Harnessing the potential of observability

Whilst adopting an always on approach to monitoring is crucial, to truly mitigate risks, it’s key that operators always have full observability of their infrastructure. ‘Observability’ instead of ‘monitoring’, is the key word here.

While observability provides an explanation for why a system is not operating, monitoring tells you whether the systems are functioning. It is crucial to achieve real-time observability of all pertinent structured and unstructured data in real-time; by utilising technology to do this, firms can dramatically reduce mean time to resolution (MTTR) – the time it takes to resolve faults should they occur, which is essential when it comes to getting services up and running as quickly as possible.

Companies who are subject to unforeseen systems failures, can swiftly erode their reputation, customer trust, and financial health if observability is not prioritised. Additionally, the capacity to maintain uninterrupted operations, which mainly depends on reliable IT systems and ongoing observability, can be the difference between being a hero and fading into obscurity in the gaming sector.

A closer look at monitoring solutions

Fortunately, there are advanced monitoring and observability solutions available that cater to the specific needs of the gambling industry. By leveraging these tools, firms will gain real-time insights into the health, performance, and ultimately the security of their IT systems. This means they can proactively identify issues before they become a problem, manage risks, and ensure smooth operations, even in the face of high demand and dynamic changes which the gambling industry is known for.

Firms may ease the process by allowing them to monitor critical components of their IT infrastructure, such as networks, apps, databases, and servers, effortlessly though a unified dashboard. IT teams can then gain a full picture of their systems by combining this into a single pane of glass view, allowing them to discover possible bottlenecks and make well-informed decisions to optimise performance and elevate the overall customer experience.

With observability, gambling firms can proactively identify and address issues, optimise performance, comply with regulatory requirements, gather business insights, and embrace the Big Brother-like approach to systems. Prioritising observability is not just a strategic advantage in a competitive business where every second counts, but it is also a must for long-term success.

In doing so, gambling firms can confidently navigate the dynamic landscape, ensure transparency, trust and securing their positions as leaders in the industry, just like the captivating nature of Big Brother’s constant surveillance.

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