What’s the difference between a reactive and proactive approach to storage operations? About a 90% reduction of your support calls and significant reduction of your staff’s time. At least, that was our experience using the NetApp Customer Fitness Program for storage maintenance in NetApp IT.


Our IT organization plays a dual role for NetApp, being first adopters of new NetApp solutions, while also being responsible for keeping the business running. So when we were upscaling NetApp’s storage operations in 2012, we became one of the first organizations to use the Customer Fitness methodology and tools. And it’s had a huge impact on our operations, our uptime, and the quality of experience we provide for our users.


We always strive to be as proactive as possible. And it’s intuitive that the more time your staff spends “fighting fires,” the less they’ll have to focus on more value-added projects. But it’s one thing to believe in the importance of being proactive; it’s another to actually reorient your day-to-day operations to make it a reality.


Customer Fitness provides a structured framework for integrating proactive maintenance into your storage practice, as well as tools that provide at-risk system analysis. In the year after implementing the methodology, we went from about eight P1 support incidents per month to one or two-all from heading off potential issues before they affected users. And within our team, especially among my highest-skilled staff, we were able to recover 25% of our time on average. That’s hundreds of hours per year that we used to spend responding to unexpected problems, that we can now devote to focusing on new innovations to add value to NetApp and our customers.


Check out the video above to learn more about how we did it, and if you’re a NetApp customer, start thinking seriously about incorporating the Customer Fitness methodology, which is entirely free to our customers, into your own operations. Your users and staff will thank you for it.


Michael Morris

As the Senior Director for Platform, Cloud and Infrastructure, Mike leads NetApp IT’s hybrid cloud and DevOps platform strategy―orchestrated and managed by an automation ecosystem―to create a holistic environment for cloud-aware enterprise applications. Mike leads the automation, infrastructure, cloud, and service management teams for NetApp which culminate to create NetApp IT’s DevOps platform, “CloudOne”. He also spearheads the internal feedback program between IT and product development and marketing, discussing how IT uses NetApp products and services.

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