Our IT group ensures optimal management of IT services to our end users,” says the IT System Architect at Bayer in Italia. “Our work is measured in terms of quality, business value, and efficiency.” That’s a big challenge for any IT group, but Bayer in Italia’s 70-person IT team services 2,500 employees who work across four locations (Milan headquarters and Bergamo,Vicenza, and Terni plants) and contribute over a billion euros(€1.5 billion in 2010) to one of the most recognized brands inthe world.
“The IT group is organized to focus on two areas—demand and supply. The demand area is tasked with maintaining customer satisfaction by defining needs, creating development plans and investment strategies, and implementing technologies. The supply area ensures business continuity by maintaining the infrastructure and applications.”
At the center of both demand and supply issues are 120 Windows® production servers that run Bayer in Italia’s data warehousing, business objects, and CRM system, along with local applications that access Microsoft SQL® and Oracle® database platforms. Efficiently managing those servers and operations along with thousands of end users is only possible through automated job scheduling.
“We were managing about 4,000 jobs with a task scheduler that had the features we needed, but it wasn’t very user friendly. Also, it only worked on UNIX® and a large reorganization had moved us to a SQL platform running on Windows. We looked for cross-platform job scheduling software and found Automate Schedule.”
“Using Automate Schedule's checking and monitoring capabilities, we’ve increased the level of control we have over job flow and scheduling.”
Bayer in Italia’s IT System Architect also said it was a “pleasant surprise” that Automate offered all the features included in their previous solution. Even better, Automate added a modern, user-friendly interface. “Automate Schedule is very intuitive and it’s easy to make dynamic changes.”
“We’re using it to organize all kinds of tasks— file transfers, business application programs, reporting, MS SQL Server jobs—in many flows and schedule them by time of day, by event, or by calendar dates. In addition to its job scheduling capabilities, Automate Schedule allows us to update its software across all agent servers remotely. That saves us a lot of maintenance time.”
Easily automating critical, yet time-consuming tasks is always a benefit for busy IT departments. But Bayer in Italia’s end users have also noticed service improvements with Automate Schedule in place. IT works with internal customers to create official work flow documents using Automate Schedule's Job Flow Diagram feature. Those diagrams are used to communicate all flow changes and improvements. “Using Automate Schedule's checking and monitoring capabilities, we’ve increased the level of control we have over job flow and scheduling. Managers are notified immediately when specific jobs need attention. We can see the bottlenecks at a glance from the Schedule Activity Monitor and quickly hold, run, or release a job as needed.”
Moving from one job scheduling platform to another can be tricky, but Bayer in Italia reports that migrating to Automate Schedule required little effort and minimal technical support. In fact, the migration gave the IT team an opportunity to reorganize tasks and adjust flow scheduling to increase efficiency.
“Migrating to Automate Schedule required little effort and minimal technical support. In fact, the migration gave the IT team an opportunity to reorganize tasks and adjust flow scheduling to increase efficiency.”
While Automate Schedule has become an essential tool at Bayer in Italia, they know that its limits have hardly been stretched. “We’ll continue to use Automate Schedule to manage scheduling flows for all of our new servers and applications.”