IT administrators who manage private or public clouds or constantly rotate workloads to support follow-the-sun requirements, need to quickly adjust their virtual and physical resources to optimize infrastructures, balance workloads, and compensate for performance issues. Most organizations begin their cloud journeys by implementing virtualization, thereby enabling resource pooling and optimization, with a primary goal of consolidating server workloads and reducing hardware, power and cooling costs. However, more sophisticated virtual automation tools are required to manage today's cloud environments, including: automated/self-service provisioning of infrastructures and applications, automated remediation, VM usage tracking, reporting, showback and chargeback.
According to IDC, "While virtualization allows IT organizations to improve utilization of server and system resources, cloud architectures (must) take operational effectiveness a step further. Clouds use self-service portals and service catalogs, as well as automated policy-driven provisioning and configuration management tools, to enable pooling and dynamic assignment of computing resource in order to optimize business service performance and costs."(CA Automation Suite Paves the Way for Cloud, Mary Johnston Turner, October 2010, IDC)