Customer Story

Department of Corrections Resolves Performance Issues

Organization Description: This state’s Department of Corrections is a correctional facility that provides and promotes public safety through efficient and effective offender custody, care, control and treatment consistent with sound correctional principles and constitutional standards.

Business Value of Vityl Capacity Management: The Department of Corrections used Vityl Capacity Management to reduce the CPU utilization of its Oracle database from an average of 80 percent to 40 percent and avoid additional hardware purchases totaling more than $60,000.

Background

This state’s Department of Corrections (DOC) oversees three state prisons, six private prisons, and 11 regional facilities. They maintain a database of more than 52,000 inmates, parolees and probationers that can be accessed by 3,500 correction officials throughout the country. The database is accessed and maintained via corrections and case management systems costing millions of dollars.

Timely and accurate information is required from the database at all times. For example, users receive automatic notifications when an inmate’s status is updated. This aids important communication among officials and agencies. Likewise, when the state legislature is in session, information from this database is used to determine funding for future projects.

The Challenge

Service performance began to lag, resulting in lost productivity, slowed communication among officials, and plenty of frustration. End-of-month data entry, for example, was taking five days instead of the normal one.

“After our first year of using the system, we were no longer meeting agreed-upon service levels,” said the network systems manager for the DOC.

On the hot seat to fix the problem and regain satisfactory service level performance, he and his team had to uncover the cause of the slowdown and determine the best way to address it.

“Vityl Capacity Management made a measurable improvement in our response time and enabled us to reduce the CPU utilization of our Oracle database from an average of 80 percent to 40 percent.”

Network Systems Manager
State Corrections Department

He worked with the business, product support, Linux, Windows and VMS users to define the solution specifications to meet everyone’s needs; the incumbent solution had fallen behind the demands of the organization some time ago. His main priority was to find a capacity and performance reporting tool that was all-inclusive.

Having gone through the tender process and extensive evaluation and review, Vityl Capacity Management was selected. He said, “The implementation was really quick and easy. Almost within a month we had Vityl running on everything in our environment.”

Immediate Impact

At the same time, some consultants were working on a project that required system statistics. They were using a system administrator’s time to complete the work, which was time-consuming and pulled

the system administrator away from his normal tasks. In a pinch, they used Vityl, and it saved them time and money. “I believe this alone saved us about £75,000,” he stated.

Within the first three months of using Vityl Capacity Management, the group saved about £400,000.

“Vityl Capacity Management paid for itself within one quarter. We found a bunch of runaway tasks on different machines that were using memory and CPU, so we saved upgrading those machines by catching those runaway tasks,” he said.

The Solution

Using Vityl Capacity Management, the manager and his team quickly discovered that database queries were structurally incorrect and that caching was not being used, causing servers to run at 100% capacity.

“Vityl Capacity Management validated that there was a problem and helped us locate and resolve the issue,” he said. As a result, service performance was restored to satisfactory levels without upgrading infrastructure.

“Our users were able to access information within seconds instead of minutes, and reports were delivered within hours instead of days.”

Benefits

Vityl Capacity Management enabled the DOC to meet agreed upon service levels for its users. The DOC was finally able to experience the expected benefits of its multi-million dollar investment in corrections and case management software. And the organization saved money by avoiding unnecessary hardware purchases totaling more than $60,000.

“Vityl Capacity Management made a measurable improvement in our response time and enabled us to reduce the CPU utilization of our Oracle database from an average of 80 percent to 40 percent,” said the network systems manager. “Vityl is a real lifesaver, as we have some customers that don’t understand delays.”

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Results

Improved database response time to meet agreed-upon service levels

Reduced reporting time from days to hours

Avoided $60,000 in unnecessary hardware purchases

Key Problems Solved