Presented by AppDynamics


Digital experiences have to be seamless (and flawless), or the company takes the hit. Delivering those experiences means grappling with an increasingly complex, interdependent nexus of cloud environments and applications. Nothing less than full-stack observability, or the ability to monitor the IT ecosystem across the entire stack, can help technologists deliver. That’s why so many global technologists are making the switch from classic monitoring tools, according to new research from Cisco AppDynamics.

The company’s report, “The Journey to Observability,” found that support for full-stack observability is soaring, and adoption is gaining momentum. Of the 1,200 global IT professionals surveyed, 88% said that their companies’ appetite for full-stack observability has grown over the last 12 months. More than half are ramping up their move toward full-stack observability. Right behind them, 36% are planning to take the plunge in the next 12 months. And 85% believe this will be a pivotal year for their organization on the journey towards full-stack observability, and that the shift to full-stack observability will be transformational.

Meanwhile, organizations in the trenches who are actively engaged with full-stack observability report a boost in productivity, a drop in the IT department’s costs, and more resources to devote to the drive for digital transformation.

“After two years of maintaining breakneck digital transformation, technologists are now looking to fortify and build on their existing monitoring capabilities to position themselves at the forefront of the next phase of innovation,” said Cisco AppDynamics VP of Technology Strategy and Executive CTO, Joe Byrne.

Here’s a closer look at why organizations are making the move.

The shift away from traditional monitoring

Global technologists saw the writing on the wall back in February 2021. The AppDynamics study, Agents of Transformation: The Rise of Full-Stack Observability, reported that 96% believed that being able to monitor all technical areas across their IT stack, and directly link IT performance to business outcomes, would be crucial.

And yet, they were still overwhelmingly using traditional and siloed monitoring tools. In most companies, internal teams use separate tools, and none of them can integrate, communicate, or deliver comprehensive, overarching insights with such disparate data. Whatever the solution, these tools rely on after-the-fact information: Log-based alerts, static graphical displays, and traditional search tools turn up issues after the customer experience has already been compromised.

But mostly, these tools are optimized for IT-centric users, rather than business-centric users. They also lack security awareness, and only provide limited analytics, triggers, and actions.

The full-stack observability advantage

Unsurprisingly, in the 2022 report, 87% of technologists are excited about the benefits of full-stack observability for their organization, from both an IT and business performance perspective; gaining a unified view on availability and performance up and down the IT stack is huge.

They’ve suddenly gained full visibility into performance for compute, storage, network, and public internet, from the customer-facing application all the way into the back end. For organizations leveraging cloud, they’re getting a 360-degree look at their cloud native environments, including the microservices and container solutions.

Since they’re backed by AI and machine learning, full-stack observability is a proactive and real-time solution. Not only can it dig up the root cause of application and infrastructure issues, it presents end-to-end context of a potential problem before the customer experience is ever at risk — a big leap ahead from traditional monitoring.

Reaping the competitive advantage

Technologists report that business leaders are getting on board. They’re seeing preliminary results, including enhanced user experience, cost and performance optimization, and increased revenue, and they’re routing the budget and resources required to expand these initiatives.

End-to-end visibility on the backend is foundational to digital transformation. Companies that don’t make the leap are facing the risk of falling behind the competition, opening themselves up to the big app outage that wrecks their reputation, cutting themselves off from the opportunities and revenue that speed the growth of digital companies, and more.

IT professionals are fully cognizant of what’s at risk, with 80% acknowledging that failure to make significant strides toward full-stack observability in 2022 means losing competitive advantage. There will be organizational consequences if they fail to progress on their plans, say 95%, with 96% anticipating negative consequences if those efforts fall short.

Implementing advanced observability solutions

75% of technologists say that technology skills are crucial to achieving their full-stack observability goals in 2022. In a technology category that’s evolving so rapidly, organizations benefit from tapping a trusted partner that can not only deliver best-in-class solutions but help them to implement the cultural and operational changes necessary to maximize the benefits of full-stack observability.

“There’s no doubt that full-stack observability is mission critical for technologists in 2022,” says Byrne. “Technologists now find themselves with a unique opportunity to impact their organizations, and they’re feeling excited and confident.”

The big takeaway of the report: the transition to full-stack observability is gaining momentum, and technologists are feeling hugely optimistic about achieving and exceeding their goals in 2022. They’re building on their progress as they expand their monitoring strategies, intent on gaining the visibility and insight they need to deliver seamless digital experiences and reap the competitive benefits.

For more on how global technologists are accelerating their transition to full-stack observability, download the free report, “The Journey to Observability.”


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