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Configure a Key Performance Indicator in IT Analytics 7.1

Created: 10 Jul 2012 • Updated: 22 Nov 2013
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One of the advantages of using IT Analytics is the ability to use an intuitive reporting framework that lets you quickly translate large data volumes with the goal of making informed business decisions. Microsoft SQL Analysis Services leverages this capability through Key Performance Indicators (KPIs). KPIs are defined as quantifiable measures that represent a critical success factor in an organization. The emphasis is on the action of quantifying something in the environment. For example, the KPIs must be measurable to successfully be monitored and compared against a given objective. 

Using the Patch Management Cube in IT Analytics 7.1, we will create a Key Performance Indicator (KPI) that will allow for the monitoring of Patch Installations versus Patch Applicability for a specific software provider bulletin.

Creating a KPI from a Cube View

  1. Within the Symantec Management Console, navigate to Reports > All Reports > IT Analytics > Cubes and select the Patch Management Cube.
  2. Drag both the Installed Computer Count and Applicable Count totals into the data pane. 

  1. Drag and drop the Software Update - Provider attribute into the rows pane.

  1. Drag and drop the Software Update - Severity attribute into the filters pane.

  1. Select the drop-down menu for the Software Update - Severity filter and select the box for Critical.

  1. Drag and drop the Software Update - Reference attribute into the filters pane.

  1. Select the Software Update Reference APSB11-28 (or another reference relevant to your environment).

  1. Right click on the Installed Computer Count value Software Update Reference APSB11-28 and the select Use as KPI Value.

  1. In the New Key Performance Indicator pane change the Goal radio button from None to Dynamic.  This will allow us to choose another cube value as our Goal to compare our KPI against.

  1. Now Right click on the Adobe Applicable Computer Count value in the and select Use as KPI Goal.  This will allow us to compare our KPI to the total number of applicable computers.

  1. Click the Create KPI button.

  1. In the Key Performance Indicator Window  type "Computers with the Adobe Patch APSB11-28 Vulnerability" in the KPI Name textbox.

  1. In the Status Expression dropdown box select "Percentage of Goal".
  2. In the Status Graphic dropdown box select "Cylinder"
  3. Click the Save KPI button.
  4. When the screen refreshes click the "Close" button.
  5. Click OK on the Windows Message box to reload the page.

  1. Click the Key Performance Indicator item from the left tree navigation.

 

Optional - Setting the Status of a KPI (Advanced)

For the purposes of creating a KPI, the Status Expression is defined as a number between 1 and -1. While we defined this as Percentage of Goal in the previous exercise, the most flexible and granular way of defining how these values are populated is through an MDX string. This comes into play when we want to explicitly set an acceptable threshold for a certain metric.

This procedure is an example of enhancing the KPI that was previously created above.

  1. On the Key Performance Indicators page, click the Edit link next to the KPI that was already created.
  2. In the Status Expression box, click MDX Expression.
  3. In the text area box that pops up, enter the following MDX code:

CASE
WHEN
aggregate({[Software Update].[Software Update - Severity].&[Critical]},
[Measures].[Vulnerable Computer Count])
< 0.1 * aggregate({[Software Update].[Software Update - Severity].&[Critical]},
[Measures].[Applicable Computer Count])
THEN   1
WHEN
aggregate({[Software Update].[Software Update - Severity].&[Critical]},
[Measures].[Vulnerable Computer Count])
> 0.25 * aggregate({[Software Update].[Software Update - Severity].&[Critical]},
[Measures].[Applicable Computer Count])
THEN   -1
ELSE   0
END

  1. For Status Graphic, click Traffic Light.
  2. Click Save Changes.
  3. Refresh the list of KPIs. A stoplight should display under the Status column. It indicates the current status for this KPI.