Continuous availability and unceasing innovation are prerequisites for today’s digital businesses. So it makes sense that business leaders invest heavily in teams and tools to monitor digital apps and services. In theory, these tools should also free up time for engineers to push new functionalities that wow customers.
But do these investments actually result in more uptime and customer-delighting innovations? No, not even close, according to Moogsoft’s first annual State of Availability Report.
The State of Availability Report, which set out to help engineering teams and leaders uncover insights and develop good practices for availability, found that teams are stuck in monitoring cycles. They have too many tools and spend too much time monitoring these tools — at the expense of innovation.
In the meantime, this double investment (in tools and people power to manage these tools) goes largely unnoticed by management.
Consider the monitoring problems the State of Availability data revealed:
Problem #1: Engineers have too many single-domain tools
Monitoring tools are critical to detecting problems in an organization’s digital apps and services. But engineering teams use a lot of these tools, an average of 16 to be exact. And, as SLAs climb higher, the average number of monitoring tools per category increases — with some organizations using 40 tools.
This tool sprawl matters. For starters, each tool has license fees, management costs and maintenance overheads that have real impact on the bottom line. But the high price tag isn’t the only issue.
Problem #2: Engineers spend too much time monitoring sprawling tools
Too many monitoring tools require another valuable resource — time. Monitoring tools aim to detect incidents and outages quickly, but more tools don’t produce quicker results. In fact, multiple tools demand more of an engineer’s time, not less.
Numerous IT monitoring tools bury teams in data, and this data lacks value if tools fail to integrate. In the case of an incident or outage, teams must look to disparate sources to piece together critical information. And this inefficiency costs teams precious time.
Problem #3: Leaders are unaware of how much time teams spend on monitoring
Managers seem to have on their rose-colored glasses when it comes to their teams’ daily activities. While engineering teams decidedly spend the most time on monitoring over any other activity, leadership has a different perspective.
Leaders underestimate the time spent on managing and maintaining tools and instead believe engineers spend time equally across most activities like automation, cloud transformation, development and incident response.
Problem #4: Innovation is suffering
Maintaining app and service availability and performance are table stakes, so simply keeping the engine running doesn’t add much value to the customer experience. Modern customers expect continuous platform improvements and new functionalities.
But, with engineering teams stuck in monitoring cycles, they don’t have time for the innovation and experimentation that shape the customer experience. As a result, many organizations lag behind in company-differentiating cloud transformation, automation and DevOps capabilities that enable faster platforms and new features.
The solution: introduce AIOps for better availability outcomes
No business leader wants to make unnecessary investments, especially during economic uncertainty. Instead of continuing the needless investment in more monitoring tools, leaders must monitor more efficiently:
- Connect monitoring tools with AIOps. To get a real-time understanding of the incidents that affect availability and performance, engineering teams need domain-agnostic AIOps solutions. These platforms ingest data from all IT monitoring tools and act as a central system of engagement, rapidly identifying the source of the problem, automatically alerting engineers to the incident and providing teams with valuable context.
- Reduce noise. AIOps platforms apply statistical calculations and noise-reduction algorithms to massive amounts of alert data. This process surfaces only the alerts that matter and puts them into a single view for fast incident detection and response — and more time for teams.
- Pay down technical debt and consolidate tools. By implementing AIOps, leaders break wasteful monitoring cycles and free up time. Engineers should spend this newfound time reducing monitoring tools’ footprint, automating away toil and using chaos engineering experiments to further improve availability.
An investment in AIOps can save leaders and engineers valuable resources. And with these resources, teams don’t just maintain the customer experience. They advance it through value-generating innovation and experimentation.
Need to fix your monitoring problem? You may want to take Moogsoft’s AIOps solutions for a free 14-day test drive. Our advanced AIOps platform will guarantee your technology’s availability, reduce your team’s toil and might even free up time for customer-delighting and team-fulfilling innovation and experimentation.
About the author
Minami (Coirin) Rojas
Minami leads Digital Growth at Moogsoft. She's been a proven leader with experience optimizing B2B SaaS scaled revenue through web and self-service online acquisition channels. Outside of the business world - amateur photographer, travel lover, and mini-daschund dog mom.