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Communicating Across Silos with a Continuous Improvement Approach

By Mike Hicks
| September 30, 2021 | 7 min read

Summary

Customers demand continuous delivery of optimal applications. So, NetOps must use DevOps' continuous improvement approach to satisfy that expectation.


Continuous improvement is fundamental to DevOps, as they operate in a constantly evolving world of continuous integration and continuous deployment, built on an expectation of ever-improving quality and performance. From a network performance optimization perspective, correlating visibility across network, application, routing and device layers also provides a continuous improvement model. In this model, which borrows from the DevOps approach, the first priority is to identify baseline performance and any third-party dependencies that may impact it.

Devops-framework.png
Figure 1. DevOps framework

You've Got One Shot 

Customers demand continuous delivery of optimal app performance and reliability, which is what makes a DevOps mentality critical for digital businesses today. According to Cisco AppDynamics' 2021 Attention Index, brands have just one shot to impress consumers. Fail to perform, and they are less likely to use your digital service again.

Whether an app's performance fails to match the users' expectations due to external factors out of your control is irrelevant to your users. The trouble is that the issue could lie with Internet connectivity. Or third-party plugins. Or a latent DNS server. After all, the reliance by apps on a diverse, distributed network of APIs connected by the Internet is increasing.

Say No to Silos 

App developers and DevOps have long-held principal roles in assuring optimal digital experiences. This often means that the application testing performed seldom takes into account critical feedback on how the network impacts performance. Such as whether an API call can be verified in time and reliably, or how the application will perform for users in different geographic locations.


Read our new eBook, "Applying a DevOps Mentality to Network Monitoring"

NetOps must step into the spotlight to ensure optimal application experience from multiple locations. From the test phase, NetOps should understand how the network will interact with the application. And how the application will behave over the network.

DevOps also needs to be enabled to monitor the underlying network performance. As applications run into production, doing so will build awareness of how well their code performs across the network.

Monitoring the Environment 

There are great monitoring tools on the market for application performance that specifically focus on how the application performs on the hosts. However, most lack insight and visibility into the underlying network. How else can you manage app dependencies on multiple clouds in constantly changing service provider locations?

If one of your business-critical applications is not owned by you, then instrumenting the application at a host level is not possible. What is needed is an alternative solution that combines transaction monitoring with visibility into underlying Internet and WAN networks. The former measures app performance from a user perspective through emulated workflows. While the latter allows you to track how the network is doing in real-time. 

That Something Special 

This dual-pronged approach to monitoring application experience and delivery is available with ThousandEyes. Our transaction monitoring correlates visibility across the network, application, routing, and device layers. And since no web traffic is needed to generate application performance metrics, this solution is perfect for testing apps before going live with customers.

With ThousandEyes Internet and WAN visibility, your IT team gains end-to-end hop-by-hop visualization of the network. Our easy-to-digest topologically correlated views account for billions of measurements per day that monitor the delivery of business-critical apps 24/7.

Using a Selenium-based, JavaScript transaction engine, ThousandEyes enables your DevOps and NetOps teams with insights into page load times and service availability. Two metrics that impact conversions and productivity, and thus the bottom line. 

Best of all, ThousandEyes' interface aligns its correlated visibility within a single workflow. That allows for efficient utilization by both NetOps and DevOps. That way, those responsible for application performance and availability can use ThousandEyes to address Internet-related impacts. At the same time, those responsible for the network gain an enhanced workflow that integrates business insights. 

Roadmap to Performance 

FICO provides analytics software and tools that help millions fight fraud and make intelligent decisions about creditworthiness and risk. This global organization uses the native integration between ThousandEyes and AppDynamics to reshape its troubleshooting and experience optimization approach.

"Together, they provide a roadmap for resolving performance and connectivity issues inside and outside of our network quickly, thoroughly, and proactively to keep our whole environment running at peak performance," says Hari Vittal, Senior Engineer at FICO. 


Read the FICO Case Study


Peak app performance benefits everyone: Happier customers, more productive employees, and a better bottom line for your business. 

App-lause 

Adopting a DevOps approach also allows the NetOps team to influence the digital experience proactively. Doing so helps both App and Network teams avoid finger-pointing using objective data. The result is faster applications with fewer errors.


Ready to communicate between those silos and establish collaboration across NetOps and DevOps? Book a demo or begin your free trial with ThousandEyes today! 

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