Integrating APM and CX

Integrating APM and CX

22nd September 2017

With revenue paramount to modern online businesses the requirement for more efficient technology and visible return on investment is at a premium now more than ever. Across the retail sector alone, Gartner sees a high priority given to spending on technologies that help understand customers better, improve engagement through multi-channel experience and facilitate the buying process. APM and CX solutions are two specific examples of this.

With large investments being made the pressure to garner value from this abundance of technology is high. This is none more pertinent than within large eCommerce conglomerates who often face difficulties in aligning technical resource to bottom line value.

DevOps teams in organisations like these frequently find themselves overworked and under resourced having a raft of tasks and firefighting to contend with. For many, keeping the website “up and working” is enough to contend with on their ever growing to do list. However, by focussing on up/downtime rather than the complete experience you risk missing out on a huge opportunity for greater revenue and departmental benefit. This can be achieved by integrating Customer Experience (CX) into the wider business ecosystem.

The challenge – working in silos & sharing ownership

A common challenge impacting wider business collaboration within organisations is the tendency to work within silos which in itself is not an effective way to drive growth. Departments working independently of one another tend to only seek external involvement for large projects, or as technical professionals know all too well, “when something goes wrong”. You may be familiar with a typical conversation between a marketing and technical owner going:

CMO – “Conversion seems to have dropped I think we have a technical issue.”
CTO – “Our systems and statistics are normal, do you have any more details?”
CMO – “No, all we know is conversion is down.”
CTO – “Sorry, I’m afraid we can’t help as we don’t have enough to go on.”

While both departments are fulfilling their role, there is a missing piece of the jigsaw which ultimately manifests as an unresolved issue that impacts the business.

Challenges like this are common and have resulted in many organisations pursuing strategies to create greater alignment between key departments. Recent trends have seen businesses adopt agile working frameworks characterized by self-organized teams, easy adaption to change and developers and business owners working closely throughout projects.

This has coincided with the continual shift towards data driven decision making whereby analytics are embedded into functional operating models in a bid to become more customer focussed. With data capture on an ever upward trend the revenue potential at the hands of large organisations is impressive.

Key to unlocking this potential lies in making sense of the of data available and communicating this in an actionable way across departments. This where integrations between Application Performance Management and Monitoring (APM) tools such as New Relic and Customer Experience Software like UserReplay come to the fore.

Align departments, accomplish more (APM & CX)

By harnessing the combined power of your Customer Experience Analytics (CEA) software and your APM provider you can soon begin to work cross-functionally to the benefit of the business.

Revenue focussed departments can easily provide technical teams with useful data containing session replays, code snippets and quantifiable datasets of affected users/patterns; assigning lost revenue to these cases.

Technical leads can in-turn use this data and directly correlate it into their APM solution to cross reference and pinpoint where and when issues occurred.

The result is an imminently more streamlined process which not only delivers greater value to the business but also improves communication, coordination and resolution time between departments with bottom line the focus.

Now conversations between marketing and technical owners can have more positive conclusions, just like:

CMO – “Hi, our conversion is down. UserReplay’s machine learning has identified a segment of impacted users. The issue is worth around $2M p.a. so it is a high priority. The visual replays show there are no error messages, but it looks like something is going wrong technically.
CTO – “Could you bookmark a couple of the journeys in UserReplay so we can look?”
CMO – “Done.”
CTO – “Ok we have just checked the data behind the replays in UserReplay and then linked them into our APM solution. Our APM tool diagnosed the issue. It was related to an unexpected interaction with an operating system upgrade we did yesterday. It’s now fixed!”
CMO – “Thanks!”

Less work, more reward

DevOps and CX/Ecommerce teams can form an unlikely alliance by simply integrating two core units of business technology. CX/Ecommerce teams can continue to drive new business and improve revenue streams while DevOps can quickly resolve and prioritise issues, freeing up time to work on more innovative projects.

If you’d like to find out more about integrating APM and CX be sure to read the New Relic & UserReplay datasheet. Find out more practical scenarios like this, including:

  • How to link customer support to technical issues
  • The easiest way to prioritize technical work for maximum revenue impact

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