Downtime is the biggest nightmare for organizations that capitalize on technology. A study about enterprise outages found that nearly 96 percent of enterprises had faced downtime in the past three years. Businesses lose a minimum of $1.55 million annually and 545 hours of staff time due to IT downtime. Up to 51 percent of downtime is preventable, which means businesses are spending on damage control when these resources could be diverted to something more fruitful, like R&D.
Downtime isn’t the only issue that costs businesses a hefty amount. Longer load times are serious, seasonal complications that can be prevented too. This is where application performance management (APM) can provide a great deal of value for IT teams.
An APM solution—with “APM” also sometimes referring to application performance monitoring, which is part of management—offers a more proactive approach than traditional solutions when it comes to prevention and resolution of issues.
Now let’s talk about APM in detail.
What is application performance management?
APM refers to monitoring or managing the performance of your code/application, its dependencies, transaction times, and the overall user experience. While application performance monitoring only refers to the aggregation and monitoring of performance metrics, APM is part of a broader project to ameliorate performance degradation, identify faults, and empower you to take the right action on monitored elements.
Why do you need APM tools?
In our virtually connected era, application unavailability could sever a user’s connection to the outside world. Suppose all your apps started malfunctioning and lagging—what would become of you? Suppose you don’t have an APM solution in place; the IT team would be swamped with support calls, and the MTTR to fix the issue would be greater because they wouldn’t be able to accurately pinpoint the source of the problem. An APM tool will protect your businesses from potential IT threats.
In most organizations, IT teams can be divided into support, ITOps, DevOps, quality assurance (QA), and security. APM is relevant to three of these teams: ITOps, DevOps, and QA.
It’s the ITOps team’s responsibility to make sure their organization’s IT infrastructure is healthy and provision the services necessary for rapid development sprints and feature release cycles. An APM tool helps mitigate risks and reduce the negative effects of faults that occur on systems.
QA teams not only ensure the quality and proper functioning of applications but also have an unsaid duty to check compliance with SLAs. Synthetic monitoring is a great way to ensure adherence to SLAs and assure that applications exhibit ideal performance; this type of monitoring can be easily carried out with robust APM software.
When it comes to DevOps teams, application performance management tools support DevOps goals, like shorter development and discharge cycles, and reduce defects in critical applications.
In a nutshell, Application Performance Monitoring software helps development, QA, operations, and product strategy teams achieve a common goal, i.e., business continuity. While an APM tool isn’t mandatory, it greatly reduces the number of disruptions and, as a result, helps avoid unnecessary IT expenses.
The qualities of a good APM tool
An APM tool must possess certain qualities to qualify as acceptable. For example, an app-metric-based monitoring tool can tell you when an application’s performance is deviating from optimal behavior; an intelligent APM tool can parse the transaction data and perform code-profiling to reveal the reason behind performance degradation. Key qualities of an APM tool include the ability to perform:
- URL monitoring.
- Code profiling.
- Transaction tracing.
- Synthetic monitoring.
- Application dependency mapping.
- Server and database monitoring.
- Automatic diagnostics for issues.
- Advanced analytics.
Why Applications Manager is the ideal choice
Applications Manager is an infrastructure and application monitoring solution from ManageEngine, built to guarantee availability and high performance of the various components in your IT infrastructure. It offers monitoring and analysis of KPIs of over 130 technologies, including cloud apps, containers, servers, databases, virtual apps, and web applications.
Applications that are not monolithic in nature tend to pose a challenge when it comes to monitoring. Usually, such applications have three main parts: a database, a client-side user interface, and a server-side application. Applications Manager’s APM insight agent uses bytecode instrumentation to provide deep visibility into applications and monitors an application’s performance by aggregating and tracking metrics like response time, database stats, error and exception stats, and transactional data. Applications Manager leverages code profiling and other data collection techniques to provide detailed transaction tracing.
Applications Manager ensures a seamless end-user experience of your web applications with synthetic transaction monitoring, which enables you to run a simulated application environment to experience a user’s journey through web transactions from various locations, record the sequence, and then replay it for future analysis and troubleshooting.
Applications Manager also provides application dependency maps that are updated dynamically. These maps help IT teams visualize the complex, ever-changing dependencies between an application and the infrastructure elements it interacts with. This automated visualization helps IT teams improve their troubleshooting efforts, reduce their MTTR, and understand the impact of configuration changes and planned downtime.
With Applications Manager’s intelligent fault management system, you can recognize the signs that a fault is about to occur—and take preventive measures to avert it— with the help of thresholds (which can be adaptive, static, or dynamic) and anomaly profiles. You can reduce manual intervention by associating automated corrective actions with threshold and anomaly profiles.
You can also use Applications Manager’s more than 500 prebuilt reports for more visibility into capacity planning, trend analysis, forecasting, and SLA management. The ability to quickly configure customizable, interactive dashboards helps IT and DevOps teams, as well as business owners, collaborate effectively during outages or ongoing investigations.