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The Importance of Application Observability Solutions  

Last updated on December 1st, 2023 at 11:49 am

Technologists need to promptly persuade business leaders of the need to adopt application observability solutions 

In this era of digital transformation, technologists across all industries are recognizing the necessity for innovative solutions to tackle the growing complexity in IT departments. With the rapid uptake of cloud-native technologies, IT teams are grappling with a fragmented, volatile hybrid IT landscape and are overwhelmed with volumes of data.  

Today, technologists find themselves lacking the essential tools and insights required to effectively oversee availability and performance in these hybrid environments, making troubleshooting nearly impossible. This significantly elevates the risk of disruptions and downtime in applications and infrastructure, resulting in poor digital experiences for customers and employees. 

New data suggests that most technologists believe that their IT department needs to move from a monitoring approach to an application observability solution to manage a hybrid environment. In research from Cisco AppDynamics, The Age of Application Observability, 85 percent of technologists surveyed said application observability is now a strategic priority for their organization.  

Through application observability, technologists can streamline hybrid environment management and ensure peak performance. It offers unified visibility across on-premises and cloud environments and focuses on user experience by correlating performance and data with business metrics for faster issue detection and resolution.  

Despite the importance of application observability, 71 percent of respondents said their organizational leaders do not fully grasp the requirement for modern tools in managing application availability, performance, and security. This lack of understanding could significantly impact IT teams’ ability to effectively implement new solutions, including budget allocation, sponsorship, skills development, and cultural adaptation.  

In my opinion, technologists should emphasize two fundamental ideas when communicating with business leaders about the significance of application observability: 


Achieving Seamless Digital Experiences and Sustaining Rapid Innovation Through Application Observability 

Delivering top-tier digital experiences is now a business imperative, regardless of industry. Consumers today demand flawless application performance and will turn their back on any brand that falters. Likewise, businesses need to ensure that digital services are always optimized to enable hybrid work – otherwise, they risk big dips in workforce productivity and engagement.  

application observability

Business leaders need to know that the task of delivering a seamless digital experience has become almost impossible. As application components span public and private cloud-native platforms as well as on-premises systems, visibility gaps expose elevated risks of disruptions, downtime, and security breaches. Traditional application monitoring solutions simply aren’t fit for purpose within hybrid IT environments.  

Without modern application observability, innovation efforts are in jeopardy. Huge investments in cloud technologies are futile if IT cannot ensure performance, security, and availability in new applications and underlying infrastructure. Application observability has become the foundation for accelerated and sustainable innovation. 

Leveraging Application Observability to Confirm Cloud and Digital Transformation Investments 

Amid the economic slowdown and cost-saving efforts, digital transformation budgets are facing closer scrutiny. Business leaders want to understand the impact that their investments in innovation, and particularly in cloud migration, are delivering to the business. Currently, most IT departments lack the unified visibility and insights necessary to measure IT’s impact on the business. They still rely on separate monitoring tools, preventing a comprehensive linkage of IT data with business metrics.
  

Technologists should advocate for application observability to business leaders, facilitating a direct connection between IT performance and business outcomes. This enables the validation of investments in digital transformation and cloud migration. With application observability, business leaders can direct their investments to areas where they will deliver maximum commercial impact. 

These two core benefits of application observability should be central to any business case. It should not only encompass the technological solutions but also the necessary skills, processes, and structures required for IT departments to optimize performance and drive rapid innovation in complex, hybrid IT environments. The shift to application observability requires cultural change, with all technologists collaborating around a single source of truth for IT data and working together to achieve a shared vision and objectives.  

Selecting an application observability solution requires technologists to have the right skills and knowledge to make the right decisions for their organizations. Nearly two-thirds of survey respondents said they struggle to differentiate between various application observability and monitoring solutions, indicating the need for enhanced education in this rapidly evolving market. Technologists should seek trusted partners to help them navigate this process, implementing solutions that not only work in the present but can adapt to support future digital transformation initiatives.  

Notably, a majority of organizations are already exploring application observability solutions, with 44 percent planning to do so in the next 12 months. Technologists are enthusiastic about the impact that application observability can have on end-users, the business, and the IT department. The challenge is now to convey to business leaders the transformative benefits that application observability can bring.  

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Gregg Ostrowski
Gregg Ostrowski
Gregg Ostrowski is executive CTO at AppDynamics.