In the first three parts of this series I’ve covered common ITOA use cases we’ve seen across our customer base:
Analyze the business impact
The fourth use case, analyzing business impact, is a way to quantify the value of all the work IT Operations professionals put in to making application environments run as smoothly as possible. Most of the time, IT is viewed as a cost center because when a revenue generating application has an outage for example, IT Ops is an easy team to point a finger at. However, by leveraging our new offering, Application Analytics, Operations teams now have a solution that enables them to have a more intelligent discussion about operational data and the associated business outcomes. This enables Ops to have more positive conversations that revolve around the added value that the team provides to the business.
Consider the example below; the Ops team was able to build a dashboard showing the dollar amount associated with normal, slow, very slow, and error transactions. The error transactions are the requests that did not complete as expected and resulted in no revenue. This is the money the business is leaving on the table due to an application that isn’t performing well. If the dollar value associated with these error transactions ($161K) is half of what it was during the same time period yesterday due to the work the Ops team completed by finding and fixing performance bottlenecks… they’ve added a very quantifiable number to the company’s top line.
Suppose there was an unplanned outage that affected a large number of users – wouldn’t it be great if marketing could get a report showing all the users that were affected during the checkout process and the exact items that were in their cart at the time so they could kick off a ‘win back’ campaign? With Application Analytics, Ops teams can make that wish a reality.
By filtering the set of transactions to only those with errors during a checkout process for a particular time range, and adding in the user IDs, product category, and product names, Ops teams can come out of a negative situation (like an outage) looking like a hero to their line of business peers.
Not only can Ops teams analyze the business impact of the troubleshooting they do on a regular basis, they can also use Application Analytics to identify anomalies and use this information to start the triage and troubleshooting process instead of only analyzing the results of their work. For example, Ops teams can leverage Application Analytics to discover the answers to these kinds of questions and proactively address issues:
- Why is the number of TVs sold in the past 15 minutes far below normal?
- Why are there a large number of slow transactions associated with trying to add a book to an online shopping cart?
- Why did a particular customer’s package not get delivered?
Application Analytics provides a real-time view into how the business is correlated with the operational metrics they interact with on a daily basis, all with automatic propagation of business context in the form of business transactions and no application code changes required.
In the next post we’ll talk about the fifth common ITOA use case, creating an action plan. In the meantime I encourage you to sign up for a free trial of AppDynamics to try these use cases out for yourself.