3 ways to secure application performance from the rollout
Rolling out a new critical application like an ERP is a vital objective for a CIO! There is a lot at stake from a financial investment and visibility standpoints.
Any malfunction during the rollout phase may have an impact on user adoption and slow down the business benefits of the new application. Getting things right from Day One is key to the IT team.
So, what can the infrastructure team’s contribution be to that success?
SO, What can go wrong?
Many items can go wrong in the deployment of an application. The level of visibility you have during the preparation and the rollout phase will indicate how fast you will identify an issue and fix it. It will then drive your ability to deliver the application on time and successfully.
What do you want to avoid?
- Application errors;
- Slow application response;
- Poor network delivery.
And above all, you want to avoid the situation in which end users report this and you cannot quickly identify the root cause of the problem, and repair it within a few hours.
How can you get prepared?
Well, the very first things you probably want to do as an infrastructure / IT operations team are:
- Being aware of the application rollout well in advance,
- Being involved in the testing and pre-production phases,
- Getting enough visibility to prepare for an adequate application delivery architecture,
- Having enough visibility to quickly determine what goes wrong (in case if happens) while deploying the application.
Let’s review the key criteria / data you need to go through for that preparation.
1. Understand the application’s profile and performance drivers
Even before your application starts to be used, there are some pieces of information you will want to collect to make sure you will be able to deliver it to your end users:
- Network capacity required:
- For each user, what is the bandwidth required to access the application?
- Does the bandwidth vary depending on the user’s profile?
- Do we have enough bandwidth in place to ensure sufficient application performance?
- Performance drivers:
- What drives the end user experience?
- What portion of the transaction is related to the server processing vs. the data transfers?
- By which factor, can network performance improve / influence the application delivery?
These performance drivers can help you:
- Size your network appropriately.
- Identify the right application delivery optimization solutions (and avoid wasting time and money on those which will not be helpful).
Depending on the gathered data, you may then want to investigate different options:
- Do “nothing” (if nothing is required and save your IT teams some money);
- Invest in application optimization (optimizing the server processing time and response size);
- Invest in network optimization (compression, prioritization);
- Find alternative ways to access the application (e.g. thin client).
2. Identify and fix defects and bottlenecks in pre-production
In pre-production, you need to monitor for the following phenomenons:
- Slow front end response
- When is the front server responding slower?
- For which transactions and queries do you get slow responses?
- Application errors
- For which transactions do you get application errors?
- Back end bottlenecks and slow processing
- You will probably want to also monitor the back end transactions (database, file servers, etc.).
By having visibility on all this, you will be able to share the issues, build a fix and validate the proper run of the application before it becomes available to all the end users.
3. Monitor the end-user experience in the ramp-up phase
The behavior of the application may vary depending on:
- The load;
- The location of end users;
- The connectivity between the end users and the Data canters.
It is crucial to keep the application under control and monitor the end-user experience during the ramp-up phase in order to:
- Identify sizing issues appearing at a given load;
- Identify issues which are specific to a given location.
Thanks to this continuous monitoring, you will be able to keep the resolution times short and sustain the trust the end users set in the application. As well as the one of your team sets in its collaboration with the applications’ team.
WIRE DATA CAN HELP YOU ROLL OUT YOUR APPLICATIONS SUCCESSFULLY.
Find out how you can build a practical plan to focus different teams on optimizing the performance of an application. Download our best practice guide.