In a world that relies on digital applications to power all aspects of daily life, now more than ever strong digital performance is imperative to ensuring business operations run smoothly. Failure to deliver an exceptional experience can make or break an organization. According to AppDynamics’ survey of 7,000 consumers, two-thirds of consumers claimed they would avoid trying a brand known for delivering poor digital experience and nearly as many said they would actively try to discourage others from using a service or brand they had a bad digital experience with (63 per cent).
The online customer experience is now taking precedence with more than half of consumers placing a higher value on their digital interactions with brands than their physical interactions (54 per cent) and 70 per cent of consumers wanting digital experiences to be more personalized than those that happen face-to-face.
It’s a clear message: Digital-age companies must engage customers and deliver a seamless customer experience without interruption. This is a philosophy that underpins the work of AppDynamics General Manager Linda Tong, whose organization helps client companies see inside their digital experience and alert IT staff in the event of an issue.
Getting a view into a company’s system wasn’t always so challenging. Someone with a reasonable skill set could check on the hardware and the architecture and diagnose a problem with relative ease. But cloud and new technologies have made everything more complex and distributed.
“There’s less of a chance now to be able to wrap your arms around it all,” says Tong. “There are so many individual pieces and significant overlap between applications. Add to that the fact that there is exponentially more data now than ever before.”
The pandemic has only exacerbated the situation. In the span of only a few months, the workplace “norm” has shifted from in-person at a physical office to millions of individual home offices.
Migrating from one architecture to another brings significant risk. While leaders used to be able to take their time putting together migration plans, Tong says they must now do the trick in a matter of months or even weeks.
Naturally, the strain on IT is enormous. Not only do teams have to figure out how to support all of these new endpoints, but Tong says they have to think about what it means for the business. How will they support all the business applications they are running? In many cases now, they no longer have the luxury of hanging out at a datacenter all day or physically sitting in a war room with their peers, hashing things out.
A new world of change
“With all that stress on the digital backbone, things are bound to break,” she says. “Now, if your home network goes out, or even if it’s just weak, your quality of experience will be impacted, and specifically your ability to collaborate with your teammates.”
This acceleration increases the odds of there being breakdowns in logic and planning when it comes to elements like security and productivity. “The big question is how to ensure a high level of business quality while reducing the negative impact on customers and end-users. Companies need help with this painful accelerated motion.”
New framework needed
As companies crash violently into the age of nonstop change, it is vital that they get a handle on the scores of smaller problems that together can add up to a major threat.
“Ironically, when everything’s on fire, nothing’s on fire,” says Tong. “When you have thousands of problems, you can easily get overwhelmed, with the result that your people will just throw their hands up and just press on. But hoping for the best is not a sound business decision. What’s needed in these situations is a new prioritization framework.”
From reaction to transformation
The dream for companies has always been to take all the data coming in and be able to view it in one place. This is where AppDynamics + ThousandEyes comes in. This solution was designed to provide companies with comprehensive visibility, with the ability to monitor all applications as well as every network, ISP, API, SaaS, and third-party service.
“This strikes at the very heart of the visibility problem,” says Tong. “It effectively allows you to separate the signal from the noise, to be able to correlate all your data in a meaningful way, surfacing only those things that matter today or will matter tomorrow.”
AppDynamics + Thousand Eyes helps speed up time to resolution and breaks down silos while ensuring great experiences for end-users. Tong uses the example of a retailer experiencing a problem with its shopping cart as an example:
“We might isolate it down a network problem, bringing in the context from ThousandEyes to see that maybe there’s an Internet outage in one particular area which might be impacting customers in a specific region. Even if trillions of other data points are coming in, you’re able to zero in on what matters most to your business.”
The ability to click through to get to the heart of problems allows IT groups to solve issues cleanly and painlessly, leaving them with more bandwidth to dedicate to helping the company grow. Says Tong: “AppDynamics + ThousandEyes allows businesses to move from reaction toward transformation. Coming into 2021, is there anything more important?”
Check out the latest trends in global consumer attitudes, behaviour, and expectations for digital services based on the research of more than 7,000 consumers. Download The App Attention Index 2019: The Era of the Digital Reflex.