At the end of every year, APMdigest takes a look into the future by asking experts to predict the changes that will occur within the Application Performance Management (APM) industry in the coming new year. With this new list, we are looking even farther into the future, to the evolution of APM.
This list is not so much about predictions – rather it is comprised of expert opinions on how APM should evolve. It is more like an evolutionary wish list for APM.
In preparing this list, APMdigest asked the top minds in the industry what they feel is the most important way APM tools must evolve. The recommendations on this list provide a rare look into the long-term future of APM technology.
The 2016 APM Predictions List was the longest predictions list ever featured on APMdigest – reflecting a rapidly growing, changing and increasingly complex IT environment that presents more challenges than ever before – and this list is equally epic, with 30 categories of recommendations to be posted over the next 6 days.
As usual for APMdigest lists like this, some of the recommendations could fit into multiple categories. We had to create general category headings to give the list structure, but the real value to be gained from the list is the thoughtful and introspective visions of the future offered by each expert.
1. DISCOVERING AND MONITORING DYNAMIC ENVIRONMENTS
The biggest threat to existing APM technology is the increasing dynamism of the environment. While we've had virtual infrastructures for well over a decade, the rate of change still seemed manageable. With the advent of containers and microservices plus the adoption of DevOps CI/CD practices, however, there is the potential for an entirely new scale of environmental flux if the behavior observed within large cloud companies gives us any early insights. We need to rethink not only how to discover these increasingly ephemeral assets, but also to effectively monitor them – without overloading the infrastructure (or breaking the enterprise budget).
Research VP, IT Operations, Gartner
Web-scale applications have created a massively complex challenge for modern software operations. Complexity emerging from cloud architectures, containerized microservices, open source frameworks, and data-centric applications makes it a challenge for any engineering team to monitor their systems. APM needs to evolve from simple metric collection and plotting graphs to intelligent monitoring that automatically discovers all the dynamic components of web-scale apps (open source frameworks included), provides a visual topology, and leverages data-science for intelligent analysis and anomaly detection.
2. CONVERGENCE OF MONITORING
APM consists of three main factions which must all evolve and come together for a complete solution. They are Wire Data Analytics, Synthetic Transactions, and Agent Code Instrumentation. To gain visibility at the edge and report on the End User Experience you must develop a strategy on the best way to bring together the 3 monitoring factions.
Director of Customer Experience Management at the Auto Club Group and Founder of the APM Strategies Group on LinkedIn.
3. ACTIONABLE INSIGHT
APM must evolve from being descriptive to prescriptive. Let's face it, there is an overwhelming amount of data collected by APM solutions today. But adding more data to the haystack doesn't make it easier to find a needle. What's needed is the analytics to sift through the data and provide actionable insights with prescriptive solutions. This way, you not only understand the impacts of a performance or user experience issue, but are provided guidance to understand when, where and how to act to solve or even prevent it.
VP, DevOps Product and Solutions Marketing, CA Technologies
Technology is disrupting all industries and it is happening at a breakneck speed. New business models and customer experience are supported by a mix of "technology pillars" like cloud and mobile, as well as accelerators like IoT and Artificial Intelligence. The network is what ties everything together and carries the data. As such, IT teams must manage growing service delivery complexity, design for large-scale traffic with visibility everywhere today as well as support for zetabytes of data in the future, and build for speed and agility to enable informed real-time decisions in both agile and highly automated environments. To meet these business assurance challenges, APM solutions must provide actionable insights into the connections between people, machines, data, and processes so as to optimize agility, assure service delivery, mitigate risk and provide a feedback loop to operations, development, and business functions. If done right, there are huge business benefits: happy customers and revenue growth.
Senior Enterprise Solutions Manager, NetScout
4. INSIGHT ACROSS ON-PREMISE AND CLOUD
IT environments are becoming extremely complicated with an increasing number using some combination of on-prem and cloud resources. As enterprise cloud adoption rises, hybrid cloud applications are expanding. For example, UI applications could be running on dynamic, engaging public clouds that interface with tested on-premises business logic and databases. An Application Performance Management tool that can provide analytical insights across ALL application dependencies and give one integrated view is critical in ensuring enterprise IT and application DevOps teams operate at the same sustained fast pace.
APM Offering Management Leader, IBM
5. IT OPERATIONS MANAGEMENT
Application Performance Monitoring solutions must evolve as businesses traverse their own journeys with digital transformation. In a socially and mobile enabled world, the consumer has taken control and every experience and every interaction matters. These interactions will be more and more with Internet of Things (IoT) devices leading to many new classes of things to monitor and will require tracking of highly complex interactions as well as collection and analysis of massive amounts of data. APM solutions must evolve from stand-alone solutions to a complete IT Operations Management suite and integrate with these Big Data challenges to avoid evolutionary dead end.
Senior Principal Product Marketing Director, Oracle
Read 30 Ways APM Should Evolve - Part 2, covering the evolution of the relationship between APM and analytics.
Public sector organizations undergoing digital transformation are losing confidence in IT Operations' ability to manage the influx of new technologies and evolving expectations, according to the 2017 Splunk Public Sector IT Operations Survey ...
It's no surprise that web application quality is incredibly important for businesses; 99 percent of those surveyed by Sencha are in agreement. But despite technological advances in testing, including automation, problems with web application quality remain an issue for most businesses ...
Market hype and growing interest in artificial intelligence (AI) are pushing established software vendors to introduce AI into their product strategy, creating considerable confusion in the process, according to Gartner. Analysts predict that by 2020, AI technologies will be virtually pervasive in almost every new software product and service ...
Organizations are encountering user, revenue or customer-impacting digital performance problems once every five days, according a new study by Dynatrace. Furthermore, the study reveals that individuals are losing a quarter of their working lives battling to address these problems ...
Cloud adoption is still the most vexing factor in increased network complexity, ahead of the internet of things (IoT), software-defined networking (SDN), and network functions virtualization (NFV), according to a new survey conducted by Kentik ...
Gigabit speeds and new technologies are driving new capabilities and even more opportunities to innovate and differentiate. Faster compute, new applications and more storage are all working together to enable greater efficiency and greater power. Yet with opportunity comes complexity ...
Achieving broad competence in event-driven IT will be a top three priority for the majority of global enterprise CIOs by 2020, according to Gartner, Inc. Defining an event-centric digital business strategy will be key to delivering on the growth agenda that many CEOs see as their highest business priority ...
It's not especially surprising that a new IT survey shows that cloud use for business and government poses challenges. In significant numbers across the board, respondents cited cloud complexity, compliance and security, cost control, speed of delivery, and domain expertise as the cloud problems their organizations were working to overcome this year ...