Smith explains, “One of our ambitions is to spot and deal with IT incidents before our customers do. We’ve been pretty effective at that but we can only monitor what we can see. As with many modern companies, the IT support model is complex, involving third-party organisations. We monitor the performance of the application, but that only shows us the effect, not the cause. Furthermore, as we’ve added more and more to our monitoring, more overhead is placed on the application itself.”
As Smith relays, the costs were just too high to continue with insufficient monitoring. “Every hour that our systems are not performing, we could be cancelling smart meter installations, losing sales, failing to collect cash, or simply disappointing our customers by being unable to provide the service they expect.”
The company began to look for alternative application performance management (APM) solutions. They first took note of AppDynamics’ position in the Gartner Magic Quadrant for APM analysis.
“AppDynamics was in the top right of the Magic Quadrant, and reported to be an innovative solution. They solved problems we were trying to remedy,” says Smith. “So following a selection process, we tried them out.”
The relationship developed quickly.
“We had great engagement from day one. The trial was quick to get up and running. Immediately we were impressed with how AppDynamics creates its own baseline and how little we had to configure,” says Smith.
The team discovered that AppDynamics was the solution they were looking for to keep the performance of ICE at optimal levels and even prevent potential incidents before they happen.
“Before AppDynamics, we didn’t have visibility into the web services middle tier of ICE, which is not great, because it’s a critical component. If there was a performance issue with that middle tier, we’d have to raise a ticket, get on a call with a third party and have a technician investigate. Now, with AppDynamics, we can immediately see where the problem lies.”
AppDynamics has also increased the team’s ability to work together to solve issues.
“Being able to drill down very quickly and spot issues lets us go to the right team and produce evidence, like payload data, so that we’re straight into the fix activity. Cutting out the guesswork helps us to reduce the Mean Time to Resolution (MTTR) considerably. The benefits of AppDynamics are potentially far reaching because we should be able to spend less time troubleshooting, enabling the team to spend more of their valuable time on helping our internal customers on the next new development targeted for production.”