Maintenance of a CMDB
In addition to the high requirements for the introduction of a CMDB – from a practical and company-related perspective – the maintenance of a CMDB is a challenge that should not be underestimated. After all, the data is only as good for the processes and users as it is up-to-date and correct.
When employees are given outdated or incorrect data to perform their tasks, their work is often rendered moot and useless. This leads to frustration and distrust among users and can result in CMDB bypass or unacceptance of the CMDB solution. This is exactly why a CMDB must be well maintained. This is ensured as follows:
- When automatically importing data into the CMDB, it is therefore necessary to determine how often the data must be fetched and whether this is technically feasible. In addition, it must be defined under which circumstances obsolete or orphaned data is overwritten or deleted.
- Responsibilities must be defined for the manual maintenance of data. In order to put effort and benefit in relation to each other, a list of the individual data fields should be created and the benefit and effort assessed there.
- When automating, it is important to ensure that not only CIs and attributes, but also their relations can be captured automatically.
Optimally, this can already be documented in the CMDB and, if necessary, also displayed to the user as information. Because with the dynamics of today’s business world, an intelligent, standardizing discovery engine is indispensable. It must be able to reliably identify various technical objects, read out their status and configuration, and make them easily accessible to the user on a normalized basis (with uniform designations and notations).
In addition to the intelligent discovery function, the CMDB must have sufficient interfaces and methods to be able to cleanly match data from third-party systems at any time. In short, a uniform image of the heterogeneous reality should always be generated in the CMDB.
Only if configuration items (CIs) and their relations are up-to-date and the metamodel adapts to constantly changing conditions can the CMDB exploit its true potential and become a valuable, reliable tool.