Applications are increasingly becoming valuable IT services, since customers, the end-users, depend on them for their everyday tasks. Customers expect availability, and fast response times. In other words, their overall experience with your services is critical to your company’s continuity, and growth. That’s where application monitoring comes in, as the optimal solution to identify and fix issues with your applications early on; that is, while ensuring their health, stability, and overall optimal performance.
What is application monitoring, and how can it help your IT team?
As mentioned, application monitoring is proactively keeping track of every aspect of your product environments, to identify and mitigate minor issues before they become uncontrollable problems. In short, it’s an effective way to scan your whole set of services, in real-time, and ensure they’re performing at their best.
An application monitoring tool will certainly help your IT team safeguard the health of your applications. Such a tool — or feature, within a comprehensive cloud management platform — allows access to vital health, performance, response, stability, and availability metrics. Consequently, your team can pinpoint the cause of any application setback, and fix it on the spot; be it in the code, database, network, storage, etc.
All in all, keeping tabs on these metrics systematically, helps respond to issues proactively; that is, before they get out of hand. Imagine the frustration of your end-users, in a slowdown or downtime incident! At the end of the day, you should be able to provide your end-users with a top-quality experience.
How can your business benefit from application monitoring?
As modern businesses embrace digital transformation — like cloud migration, automation, microservice architecture, etc. — they need to be able to manage their applications across vast and intricate technology landscapes. Application monitoring can certainly help towards that goal; even more so, if you use an application performance monitoring (APM) tool. However, thanks to its broad applicability, the advantages from its use are manifold. To point out a few, application monitoring, can help you:
1. Oversee and manage applications across the technology stack
Above all, application performance monitoring provides visibility into your applications’ health and how they’re performing across your stack. Therefore, if an issue arises, you can see exactly what it is, and what caused it in the first place. Without a doubt, monitoring helps to proactively address technical bottlenecks, before they reach customers.
2. Promote DevOps practices and processes
Application monitoring can help build healthier codes and fine-tune daily operations, as well. In this regard, it can enable the implementation of DevOps practices and processes within your company. Moreover, since application development, release and performance go hand in hand, it can facilitate the collaboration between the development and operations teams; and, of course, keep a steady flow in the DevOps feedback loop.
3. Break down team silos
With teams having visibility into the company’s applications, and DevOps running smoothly, people don’t need to go their own way to get the job done. In other words, application monitoring can help break down silos, by keeping everyone in the loop about every aspect of the application ecosystem.
4. Boost team productivity
Naturally, increased team productivity is a corollary of the aforementioned points; and it makes sense, right? Just think how much time your people spend trying to find and fix bugs, errors, and service disruptions! Hands down, application monitoring can save them a lot of time and hassle; while, allowing them to focus on new, exciting projects.
5. Reduce Downtime
As you already know, this is a big deal, because downtime begets unhappy end-users. Unhappy end-users can lead to a loss of revenue, and so forth! The good news is that this vicious cycle can be altogether avoided, if you proactively monitor the health and performance of your applications, and resolve bugs fast — before they start bugging your customers.
6. Streamline end-user experience, and increase customer satisfaction
Fast, responsive, high-quality, useful software is the cornerstone of good UX. If your services work like clockwork, your end-users will enjoy a flawless experience. And that’s exactly the objective behind APM: to meet — and even exceed — customer expectations. It goes without saying, satisfied customers are loyal customers; which is key for the success of your business.
7. Decrease costs, and increase profitability
By gaining visibility into application performance, you can automatically predict and manage operational and maintenance costs, as well. If you add higher customer satisfaction to the equation, you can start boosting user growth — and, thus, profitability. All things considered, when application monitoring becomes a constant practice within your business, it can help your company become competitive and profitable.
8. Experiment on innovative ideas
Last but not least, when your team has minimized the time needed to fix bugs — and costs are well-regulated — investing time and resources to work on new features, or explore creative ideas, seems like a one-way road, filled with opportunities.
A strategic approach to application performance monitoring
In recent years, the demands of the end-users in IT services are not only rapidly changing, but also increasing. Bearing this in mind, it’s important to keep the flagship products of your business, your applications, running smoothly. However, to improve end-user experience, and increase revenue potential, you also need to keep up with continuous software development; which may involve making more fixes, here and there, along the way.
Incorporating application monitoring practices and tools, is indeed a strategic approach to optimizing the performance of your IT services. On one hand, this will help your teams to better understand the behavior of your applications, detect issues early, and, of course, resolve them proactively. As a result, your services will perform as expected — if not better than before.
On the other hand, APM will also allow your team to deploy applications faster. By extension, they’ll have more time to focus on developing new, innovative and useful features for the end-users. As your applications become more and more efficient, towards maximum end-user satisfaction, your company can finally get a step ahead of competition and start thriving.