Proactively Monitor, Manage, and Optimize

This blog post is an excerpt from GovLoop’s recent guide, Forecasting the Cloud: Eight Ways the Technology is Changing Government. To download the full guide, head here.

Today, government is more and more about user interactions. The citizen is no longer seen as just a citizen — the trend is now to view anybody engaging with government as a customer. More than ever, constituents are expecting the same level of digital interaction and application performance from the government that they are provided with by the private sector.

When a government application is performing well, what the user does not see is the back end of that application — the complex software environment, the millions of lines of code, and intra agency dependencies. The only thing they’ll notice is if their interaction is slow or fails — and a poor interaction will lead them to expect poor performance in the future.

That’s why it’s important to invest in application performance management (APM). To learn more about this critical service, GovLoop sat down with Bhaskar Sunkara, CTO & SVP of Product Management at AppDynamics, a leader in application intelligence that provides operational insights into application performance, user experience, and mission outcomes of production software applications.

The AppDynamics Application Intelligence Platform uniquely delivers:

  • Complete visibility into all user interactions and transaction flows across highly distributed, complex, and dynamic application environments, using the business transaction as the unit of management.
  • A self-configuring, self-learning, and low-overhead platform that simplifies monitoring and improves decision-making, all in real time in the production environment.
  • An integrated platform that scales in the most extreme production environments whether in the cloud or in private data centers.

“With the growth of cross-agency initiatives and cloud migration in the public sector today, application performance management is especially critical. In every public sector initiative, making sure that the key applications that are required to accomplish the mission are not impacted is what we do,” said Sunkara.

Visibility into application performance becomes even more important when you have an application that’s deployed on the cloud. Some agencies and departments are used to managing their own applications in their own datacenters, which gives them more control in terms of what those machines are doing and how they are performing. But once you go to the cloud, you are using hardware and software resources that someone else is essentially hosting for you and they’re just being delivered as a service to you.

“There’s always going to be some risk in cloud deployment or the data center transformation — but with any risk associated with those types of business initiatives, we eliminate or minimize that risk by keeping the application performance at a high level, and the availability at a high level, and the end user experience at a high level.”

“So the dynamics of performance completely change, and visibility for you to be able to look at that cloud performance, and manage it, is hugely important,” said Sunkara. “Another thing that you value when you’re running on the cloud is capacity, because one of the great things the cloud brings to you is the ability to use only as much as you need. So that means visibility in terms of how much are you using, and is it optimal in terms of the resources you’re consuming?”

The Application Intelligence Platform that AppDynamics provides let you monitor and manage your critical cloud-based applications, ensure application performance pre- and post-cloud migration, and visualize the performance of your cloud application in real-time. Additionally, it requires no hardware to access the network – and the company is currently in the process of becoming FedRAMP certified.

In the end, Sunkara said, good Application Performance Management comes down to people.

“The monitoring we do is not just about the cloud, it’s also about culture,” he said. “People, our customers, are involved in monitoring the application. It can be a very personal thing, and we want to help people to do that monitoring job well.”

AppDynamics delivers a comprehensive solution — the Application Intelligence Platform — to help companies maximize business performance. The platform embraces three key principles:

  • See everything with Unified Monitoring.
    • Enabling an integrated view of real-time application performance, user experience, and infrastructure capacity.
  • Act fast with DevOps Collaboration.
    • Uniting teams through a shared, unified view of data for faster, more effective decision-making, rapid problem resolution, and automation workflows.
  • Know the business impact with Application Analytics.
    • Empowering deep, real-time analytics to help businesses make better decisions and create bigger impact — all with certainty and confidence.

It’s all designed to give government agencies the certainty that their applications are running at their best; to give IT people the operational visibility and control they need; and to give constituents the great experiences they demand.

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