Capacity planning is part of the ITIL foundation framework’s capacity management process. It’s also included in many ITIL foundation practice exams. Capacity management is an important step in the Service Design stage. An IT service provider that does not have capacity planning can either incur excessive costs to meet business needs or fail to meet ITIL service level targets. Online ITIL courses that are well-researched will also show that there are two parts to the capacity planning process and that there is a lot of interaction between the processes in the capacity management framework.
These are the two balancing acts of capacity planning
Capacity and cost
There are two dimensions to IT capacity planning. The balance between capacity and costs is the first dimension. This means that processing capacity must be sufficient to meet business requirements. It should also be affordable and can be used as efficiently possible. Let’s say that 100 000 users are required to use a service. Based on your calculations, it was estimated that four servers and two administrators could provide the required capacity. If only 50 000 people use this service, then only half of your capacity can be used. This means you had to pay more for additional capacity, even though you could have provided enough for 50 000 users. This is a prime example of poor capacity planning.
The reverse will result in service degradation. This must be considered when capacity planning is done. Service degradation will occur if there are 200 000 people who want this service. This will impact the service quality. There must be a balance between cost and capacity.
Supply and Demand
Supply and demand are the second dimension that must be balanced during capacity planning. The business’s current and future needs must be matched with the available processing services. The IT service provider must supply the service requested. A good capacity plan will ensure that the IT service provider is able to meet the customer’s demand.
Capacity planning processes
The capacity management process has three sub-processes that impact capacity planning. Business Capacity Management is the first sub-process. BCM is the responsible activity that tracks the future business requirements to be used in the capacity plan. An IT service provider may make changes to the capacity of services they offer. Some services may be highly sought after while others are not so much. A popular service may lose its popularity over time. Consider the mobile operator’s instant match score service. It might be highly sought after during a world cup period. However, the demand can drop quickly after the tournament is over. Business capacity management is a way to plan for future business needs.
Service Capacity Management is the second sub-process that impacts capacity planning. This process provides insight into the performance of IT Services and their capacity. Each IT Service’s resources are recorded, documented, analyzed, and used in capacity planning. The actual capacity performance of each service is measured and compared to the agreed capacity requirements. If the required capacity cannot meet the outputs, corrective actions can be taken and the capacity plan revised accordingly.
Component Capacity management is the third and final sub-process that has an impact on capacity planning. CCM is responsible to manage the aspects of capacity, utilization and performance of conf