Application Performance Management for Enterprise – Why and How?

Software management is one of the long-standing tasks in the digital world today. Considering the fact that present-day business is primarily laser-focused, organizations are now aware of the fact that  

  • Employee & customer experience is vital for business success, and 
  • Software performance determines the above-stated experience, at large.  

Now that the software performance owns the potential to either make or break a company, it becomes imperative for the leaders and the managers to pay immense focus on driving APM or to be precise, Application Performance Management. Using tools and embedding technologies that would tie up with your development phase leading to the creation of a feature-rich application.  

Given the time where food is delivered in 30 minutes and even in some cases, 20 minutes, customers have expectations of prompt delivery. Whether you use Google or Facebook, the response time has changed the way users connect to the outer world. If your page takes even a second more to open, it is deemed as broken or slow or irresponsive. Needless to state that such a user experience might seem fatal for your business and likewise, brand value.  

Added to the above, a slower website would influence the SEO ranking affecting the rate of conversion and the revenue on a whole. Hence, it becomes imperative for business managers to employ methodologies proven to manage and monitor the performance of an application.  

Having said that, let’s have a quick look at what exactly do we mean when we say the term Application Performance Management. 

Application Performance Management 

Application Performance Management is a much wider term than we seek it to be. While for some it might appear to be similar to application monitoring but in reality, APM consists of tools that help prevent problems, resolve issues, continuously improve alongside monitoring the application.  

Now just knowing about the practice isn’t enough and one needs to be adept in the processing and organizing of the entire tool so as to drive maxim benefits. Employing a holistic approach further narrows down the hurdles that might crossfire your application while being tested and monitored. Additionally, a better approach leads to better performance, maximum resources utilization and enhanced troubleshooting.  

An efficient APM system is capable of determining the core reason behind the occurrence of an issue along with providing solutions to deal with the same. Further, the APM tools also provide support to the organizational goal of helping managers to cut down on the cost and time of management. Needless to state that driving collaboration between the business operations and the application performance fuels organizational growth on a whole.  

Detecting Issues  

The process of APM starts with the detection of anomalies and localization. Now, these mandates using tools and technologies to aid the same.  

  • Application Monitoring: This includes tracking metrics of performances, components and application tier availability added with services, OS, database, etc.  
  • Business Transaction Monitoring: This tool deals with testifying the credibility of business transactions. Meaning that determining whether the transactions were complete, legit, noting their timings and further identifying the pain points in the request query.  
  • Synthetic Monitoring: Special scripts created by the developer to automate simulation of application actions.  
  • Real-time User Monitoring: Data analytics has proven to be a groundbreaking tool. Using customer interaction data helps identify the performance of the application gaining insights on the response time, traffic and additional information.  
  • Log Analysis: Where metrics identify the possibility of an error, logs highlight the exact place that might have caused an error. This, in a way, helps you get to the root of the problem and then provide a solution.  

How to Organize APM? 

Having mentioned all of the above, you might be wondering that APM tools drive much of the process and surely they do. However, it’s not the tools alone that account for better performance but the measures you take on getting hinted of the problems by the specified tools.  

An efficient application performance management runs as:  

  • Problem Detection 

The process of application development performance management starts with running tools and detecting all of the problems and issues as incurred within the entire application.  

  • Prioritization  

Post identification of the application performance problems, next step account’s for prioritizing all of them to keep the most important one at the top and the others descend.  

  • Alerting  

Here, the concerned stakeholders or the department are alerted on the presence of problems. Issues that are largely serious gets highlighted.  

  • Isolation 

Separating the important ones from the least important ones.  

  • Diagnosis 

Here, the encountered problems are passed through the appropriate tool to find out the exact description of the problem and further outlining ways by which the same can be resolved.  

  • Repairing 

Repairing entails applying and integrating the above-suggested measures to solve the issue.  

  • Prevention  

Integrating measures so as to prevent the occurrence of the same bug again.  

  • Testing  

Once the problem is identified, worked upon and resolved, the next step requires testifying the same to detect whether the problem still persists.  

  • Reporting   

This includes drafting a report or a summary of the entire management process. Meaning that the concerned person has to be notified about the problem, steps taken to solve, the effects it laid on the entire application development, etc. An efficient reporting helps the development team be aware of the scenario and stay updated.  

The above is the entire lifecycle of APM. Each of the said processes is as important as the other. Now, the question of who is responsible to make the above possible?  

It could either be the DevOps team or a technical team or a performance engineer who takes the task to run APM tools and build in a new environment of development and management. However, it might not be possible for a single person to take over the entire process as problems could elude from anywhere or everywhere. Hence the entire organizational team linked with the project has to step forward to test and ensure that the developed application is free from glitches and would function well across all platforms and in all conditions. 

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