50% less time spent on IT admin through collaboration and automation
Accelerated go-to-market for new Cloud microservices
Improved insights and performance across traditional and Cloud architectures
As one of America’s leading providers of dental insurance, Delta Dental Insurance serves more than 33 million Americans. Today, the insurer develops new member services faster and with greater confidence by migrating them to Microsoft Azure Cloud, with AppDynamics as the centerpiece of the company's application development lifecycle.
“AppDynamics doesn’t just monitor our front-end services, it also monitors and notifies us of any disruptions in our back-end. It’s a major advantage having a partner that watches out for us."
Expert Software Engineer, Technology Operations, Delta Dental Insurance
Modernize the user experience for 33 million members by migrating applications and service delivery to the Microsoft Azure cloud.
AppDynamics provides a single platform for application, end-user and business monitoring, empowering developer teams with insights to focus on priorities, optimize new cloud services and accelerate go-to-market efforts.
Delta Dental Insurance freed up 50% of developers’ time by enhancing application monitoring with AppDynamics, which improves team collaboration and automates insights into cloud services, improving the customer experience across channels.
"We've gone from using disjointed tools for application performance monitoring, end-user monitoring, and data analysis to one source of truth with AppDynamics. Having a single point of reference, we can count on, has revolutionized the way our developers work."
Director, Technology Operations, Delta Dental Insurance
Transforming the member experience
With more than 33 million members and a presence in 41 states and Puerto Rico, Delta Dental Insurance is America’s largest dental insurance provider. The company differentiates itself with superior customer service, be it through its member network, contact center, claims operations teams, or a growing range of digital services. Delta Dental Insurance continues to enhance its service, efficiency, and reputation as it migrates to the cloud.
To continue improving the customer experience, Delta Dental Insurance needed to increase control over its application development efforts and streamline delivery of new services. In parallel, it was starting to migrate its operations to Microsoft Azure, shifting from legacy processes to a more modern, cloud-based approach to service delivery.
“Our aim is to best serve our millions of customers with fast, easy-to-use services on our digital platform. That starts with having a single source of truth to maximize our application performance, especially as we continue our cloud migration,” says Stephen Rodgers, Manager, Technology Operations at Delta Dental Insurance.
As part of its transformation, Delta Dental Insurance is also driving a shift in its members’ behavior. Dentists and business partners will benefit from new digital services that help manage their daily tasks, rather than relying on outdated paper processes.
To that end, Delta Dental Insurance has launched an education campaign to support members in their transition to electronic services. Dentists will soon be able to file and submit claims, send X-rays, update their license information, and receive payments, all via electronic channels. The challenge for developers is to create and roll out these services quickly while ensuring no bugs or bottlenecks slip through.
A single point of reference for modern customer services
AppDynamics is a core solution supporting Delta Dental Insurance’s application development and delivery efforts, which in turn fuel new customer services being developed as part of the company's cloud migration.
As Delta Dental Insurance continues to build these new services and strengthen its digital platform, AppDynamics provides the company's teams with a single point of reference for development activities and the user experience. Improved visibility and anomaly detection in turn allow developers to optimize new cloud services before they go live, without losing time on application admin.
“We've gone from using disjointed tools for application performance monitoring, end-user monitoring, and data analysis to one source of truth with AppDynamics,” says Patrick Weis, Director of Technology Operations. “Having a single point of reference we can count on has revolutionized the way our developers work.”
Boosting service IQ with data dashboards
Delta Dental Insurance has taken its performance analytics to the next level with Business iQ, AppDynamics' industry-leading business performance monitoring and observability solution. Using this powerful feature, the company is building dashboards to track mission-critical metrics across its internal operations and front-end user experiences.
For instance, one of Delta Dental Insurance’s most popular services allows users to search for dentists in their zip code. With Business iQ, the team created a dashboard showing the top 10 most-searched zip codes where patients couldn't find local practitioners. This information was bubbled up to Delta Dental Insurance’s growth team, which could then focus on securing new dentists to cover these areas.
“AppDynamics is now the centerpiece of our development lifecycle, and our relationship with their team continues to be a tremendous asset to our organization.”
Director, Technology Operations, Delta Dental Insurance
Delta Dental Insurance is now building dashboards to track conversions and link member and partner activity back to its revenue. This activity includes customers who buy the company's dental insurance directly and through its business partners. With this complete picture of customer behavior, Delta Dental Insurance will gain a sharper understanding of how people interact with its various channels, enabling it to better serve them while driving up revenue.
Smoother integration between engineers and developers
In addition to giving stakeholders and developers greater insight into application performance, AppDynamics helps Delta Dental Insurance’s performance integration team optimize workloads running on the company’s virtual machines. The team runs tests in a purpose-built environment to monitor and refine the operations of Delta Dental’s back-end infrastructure, with each of these improvements being paid forward in the performance of its front-end applications and member experiences.
“AppDynamics doesn’t just monitor our front-end services, it also monitors and notifies us of any disruptions in our back end,” says Sarath Babu, Expert Software Engineer, Technology Operations. “It’s a major advantage having a partner that watches out for us on all fronts.”
To date, Delta Dental Insurance has freed up 50% of its engineers’ time with AppDynamics by reducing the burden of infrastructure management. Engineers now have more time to collaborate with developers to set up effective monitoring practices and gain a complete view of Delta Dental’s performance data. “Before AppDynamics, we never would have been able to dive this deep into our data and analytics without hiring more personnel,” adds Babu.
“ Our aim is to best serve our millions of customers with fast, easy-to-use services on our digital platform. That starts with having a single source of truth to maximize our application performance, especially as we continue our cloud migration.”
Manager, Technology Operations, Delta Dental Insurance
A foundational platform for cloud performance
Greater visibility across application development and end-user activity has enabled Delta Dental Insurance to modernize services in line with its cloud migration. Improved anomaly detection for developers has already accelerated the company's go-to-market for new services — such as an advanced search function for dental providers — while helping teams remove bottlenecks and bugs from Delta Dental Insurance’s customer services ahead of their release.
Delta Dental Insurance’s new approach has already passed a major test: managing peak-period demand. The first peak occurs during Delta Dental’s enrollment period, which runs from October to the end of the calendar year, and the second occurs the Monday after Martin Luther King Day, the insurer's busiest day of the year. In both cases, the business was able to stay on top of peak demand and handle spikes with ease.
AppDynamics has become a foundational platform for Delta Dental Insurance’s cloud transformation, which includes moving from monolithic application development to more flexible cloud-based microservices. The insurer has already stood up more than 50 new microservices, with AppDynamics serving as the monitoring tool for these and any new services the company will develop in the future.
Meanwhile, AppDynamics' Business iQ dashboards provide Delta Dental Insurance’s developers with deeper insight into performance and revenue across channels, helping them improve front-end applications to better serve customers. “AppDynamics has become our one-stop shop to understand user activity and revenue from our various channels, including our partner relationships. This allows us to focus on what matters most to our members, which is a win-win,” says Rodgers.
A partner for the future
Delta Dental Insurance continues to migrate to the cloud and roll out new applications to support its digital transformation. AppDynamics provides both the monitoring tools and professional support to make this migration a success, and to enable the company to take full advantage of its technology investment.
“The move to cloud requires a heavy lift, and AppDynamics Professional Services has been a true partner as we get closer to our goal of being fully cloud-based,” says Babu. “We now meet with them biweekly to optimize our use of dashboards and application monitoring, which will be crucial as we migrate new applications to Microsoft Azure.”
A relationship, formed years ago when Delta Dental Insurance needed a code-tracing solution to address a simple service deployment issue, has since evolved into a full-scale strategic partnership. AppDynamics is now accelerating the insurer's application development, and in the coming year Delta Dental Insurance is on track to deploy a range of new services hosted in the cloud.
“We took a tool that was initially purchased to solve a specific problem and built a complete program around it,” concludes Weis. “AppDynamics is now the centerpiece of our development lifecycle, and our relationship with their team continues to be a tremendous asset to our organization.”
About About Delta Dental Insurance
Delta Dental Insurance serves more than 33 million Americans through its national network of companies, offering dental coverage in 41 states and Puerto Rico. It has the largest network of dentists in America and is known for delivering quality, cost-effective services to every member.
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