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The ROI of Digital Experience Monitoring: What Can an Aternity Investment Save Your Customers?

When justifying the addition of a Digital Experience Monitoring (DEM) solution to your customer’s IT monitoring portfolio, you would be wise to expect this question from their finance teams: “Do we really need yet another monitoring product?” It’s a valid question. You need to be prepared to project the ROI of Digital Experience Monitoring to support the purchase.

After all, analyst firms say that operations teams already rely on numerous monitoring products. In its Network Monitoring Megatrends 2018 Report (April 2018, registration required), analyst firm EMA shows that 49% of enterprises use 4 to 10 tools to monitor and troubleshoot their networks. And 27% use 11 or more. Gartner’s Market Guide for IT Infrastructure Monitoring Tools (July 2018, G00335149, registration required) says that the majority of enterprises rely on five or more ITIM tools.

So, where does the ROI of Digital Experience Monitoring come in? Supporting the purchase of a DEM product requires both a technical and a financial explanation. Let’s tackle the technical argument first.

Bridging the IT Monitoring Visibility Gap with Digital Experience Monitoring

All those siloed, domain-specific monitoring tools create the IT Monitoring Visibility Gap. The products truly are important investments. They’re great at what they do. They monitor the performance and availability of their portions of the application delivery network. They tell IT when response time is slow, when there are too many errors or dropped packets, or when there’s an availability issue. All of these problems affect end user experience.

But these products don’t measure actual user experience. They only infer it. Measures like latency, errors, and retransmissions don’t represent what users actually see. That creates the IT Monitoring Visibility Gap. That’s the gap between what domain-specific monitoring products tell IT about the performance and availability of the IT infrastructure and what employees actually see when they use their devices and applications in the course of doing business. If your tools tell you that everything is green, when users are still complaining, you have a Visibility Gap.

The IT Monitoring Visibility Gap is the gap between what domain-specific monitoring tools are telling IT about the performance and availability of the infrastructure and what users are actually experiencing when they use applications in the course of their jobs.

The visibility gap exists because one cannot monitor actual end user experience from the perspective of the data center looking out. One can only monitor it from the perspective of the end user herself. From the point of IT consumption—the user’s device. And that’s what leading Digital Experience Monitoring products do.

Beyond troubleshooting: the visibility gap creates problems for executives in IT and the business

The IT Monitoring Visibility Gap has more negative impacts on business than you might expect. Sure, it causes Service Desks to be reactive when they’re surprised by users’ complaints. They spend too much time validating the user’s complaint. And IT operations teams spend more time in war room meetings trying to isolate the problem. These troubleshooting inefficiencies create excessive trouble ticket volume, duration, and Mean Time to Repair, all of which drive up costs and drive down satisfaction.

The IT Monitoring Visibility Gap creates problems with incident and problem management (top row) and other areas of service level management affecting IT and business executives (bottom row).

But the problems caused by the IT Monitoring Visibility Gap also hit executives in IT and the business. The graphic above shows these pain points in the bottom row. Reputations suffer when internal and external customers feel that IT is constantly caught by surprise by their complaints. Not good if your bonus depends on customer satisfaction scores! As an application owner, credibility is lost with the business when the SLA based on up-time doesn’t reflect what users actually experience. If your customer is funding digital transformation efforts, like migrating to the cloud, or the digital workspace, how do they know whether the investment is paying off with better service? In general, the lack of understanding of actual end user experience means a lack of understanding of the impact of IT on customer service and workforce productivity. Addressing these issues really drives up the ROI of the Digital Experience Monitoring product.

Not all Digital Experience Monitoring products are created equal

There are a variety of product approaches to monitoring end user experience. Synthetic monitoring. JavaScript injection. Network-based packet capture. Each has advantages and disadvantages. Access this EUEM white paper to see a side-by-side comparison of Aternity to other approaches.

No other vendor on the market has the advantages that Aternity has. None measure the actual end user experience of any type of app in your portfolio, running on any type of device. After all, employees use dozens of business-critical apps throughout their day. And they access those on their PCs, laptops, smart phones, tablets, and virtual desktops. Any DEM solution that doesn’t provide complete coverage exposes your customer to the pain points of the visibility gap.

The payback of an Aternity investment—what our customers say

Now let’s move on to the financial justification of an investment in Aternity. Our customers are the best source of information on the quantifiable business benefit. They’ve achieved benefits in a variety of categories, which have been explained previously in some detail. Here are the key drivers of ROI for our approach to Digital Experience Monitoring.

Operational efficiency

In a recent, third-party TechValidate survey of Aternity customers, customers reported savings in a couple of key operational areas. Aternity has helped them reduce Help Desk trouble ticket volume by 15% on average. They’ve lowered incident Mean Time to Repair (MTTR) by 3.2 hours, or 24% on average. The blogs linked here, and listed at the bottom of the page take you through exactly how to calculate the financial payback of these areas of operational efficiency.

Improved workforce productivity

Of course, the operational improvements addressed above also result in improved workforce productivity. If your customer’s IT team is reducing the volume of trouble tickets through capabilities like automated remediation, then employees spend less team impacted by problems. If their operations team has reduced MTTR by proactive notification and faster isolation, then incidents have a lower effect on productivity.

But Aternity customers improve productivity in other ways too. Aternity helps customers optimize application and device performance, and even streamline the work processes their employees use to serve their customers.

A major provider of health care insurance did just that. They analyzed the volume and response time of several business applications used by their customer service staff to process claims. They noted the trends that differentiated the most productive employees from the staff with just average productivity. Aternity data helped them redesign work processes and employee training so that fewer applications and fewer steps were needed to process claims. That’s a major driver for Digital Experience Monitoring ROI. Only Aternity gives IT visibility into the response time and volume of every critical business application used by your workforce.

More effective change initiatives

Companies invest millions in strategic and tactical IT change. These changes are expensive. Forrester says that the average cost to upgrade to Windows 10 is $220 per user. (Source: Forrester Research, The Total Economic Impact of Microsoft Windows 10, Dec 2016). Upgrading a user’s device can cost up to $1,500, including hardware and labor, according to Optimal Networks.

Making these kinds of investments requires visibility into end user experience—both to cost-justify the expenditure and to validate that the change actually resulted in better experience. Aternity enables customers to do both.

A global financial services company used Aternity for a targeted device refresh strategy to ensure they upgraded only the devices that needed it. Their overall strategy was to refresh the entire device estate over a six-year period, and they budgeted $30M annual investment accordingly. But by using Aternity to analyze device and application performance, the End User Services team identified that only 45% of the devices targeted for refresh in the current year actually needed it. In other words, device and application performance were acceptable for the users with the current device configuration. The net result was a cost avoidance of about $10M out of the $30M budgeted for device upgrades annually.

Read more examples of how Aternity enables you to drive more effective IT change in the IT Change Playbook.

The ROI of Digital Experience Monitoring: do the math for your customer’s organization

You can get a quick view of the payback of an Aternity investment for your customer’s organization with one simple step. Access our Aternity On-line Payback Calculator. The only data point you need is the number of employees in their organization. You’ll get a view of overall savings in year one, along with an idea of the reduction in Help Desk trouble tickets, MTTR, and unnecessary hardware and software spend, all based on data from our customers. Fill out the form and we’ll contact you to coordinate a full savings assessment with our local team.

If you’re ready to see the impact of Aternity on your customer’s business, you can get started today by registering for instant access to Aternity running in our cloud environment. You’ll get a guided tour through key use cases for identifying and resolving issues, as well as for many others.

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