How to Gain Insight into Cloud UX with SaaS Monitoring
New capabilities enable organizations to identify how SaaS impacts employee productivity, hold vendors accountable for performance and negotiate better subscriptions.
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Great speaking with Matthias Scharer, Vice President of Business Operations at Dynatrace at Perform 2018, about the new capabilities they offer that enable organizations to monitor SaaS application performance and truly understand its impact on the user-experience (UX).
Seeing the trouble we've had at DZone with Office 365, Salesforce, and Slack, and the negative impact on employee productivity, I was very interested in these new capabilities.
Drawing on the Artificial Intelligence (AI) within Dynatrace, the new capabilities provide enterprises with visibility into SaaS use and performance.
Organizations can now identify whether their SaaS investments are delivering the expected productivity gains and user satisfaction levels, as well as resolving employee complaints faster. If users complain about an application running slowly, crashing or being unavailable, support teams can quickly review the user session and either troubleshoot the problem themselves or escalate it to the SaaS provider. Where an issue stems from the SaaS provider, user sessions can be shared instantly to demonstrate the root cause of the problem and ensure there is no doubt over who takes responsibility for solving it.
“SaaS applications are widely used across most organizations. The benefit to the end user is an improved experience as SaaS providers can push enhanced features into the software faster. The downside for enterprise IT, especially in large multi-nationals, is reduced visibility into how these applications perform,” said Scharer. “The reality is that we often hear complaints about the performance of SaaS applications diminishing during peak periods of usage. Many providers will maximize the number of application instances running on a single host, which can result in a severe slowdown of the application. Until now, it’s been nearly impossible to prove the problem and related breaches in an SLA to the SaaS provider. With these new capabilities, you’ll no longer lose countless hours playing the blame-game with vendors who claim the service is working normally.”
I asked Matthias what had driven this new application of Dynatrace and he attributed it to a couple of Dynatrace user groups who had expressed concern with the impact ServiceNow had been having on their business.
Traditionally, gaining visibility into SaaS use and performance has entailed lengthy implementation processes, or required customers to work with the vendor to modify the application source code. Dynatrace simplifies this process by removing the need for customers to involve the vendor and allowing them to deploy monitoring capabilities directly through user browsers, within minutes. The customer can now quickly identify whether investments in SaaS are justified based on actual usage, hold vendors accountable for service performance and negotiate better subscriptions.
Scharer added, “Customers have been asking for a solution like this for their operations around the world. There are many reasons for performance problems ranging from poor code to peak usage putting too much strain on a cloud host. Location can also be an issue, for example when an application is hosted in the US and accessed by users in the Asia Pacific region it’s not uncommon to see performance degradations. Testing a site synthetically is a common method to understand user experience, but it doesn’t capture a real user who logs into the app. Variation in network, device, location, and user journey means you need to utilize real user monitoring to avoid wasting hours trying to recreate problems.”
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