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OK. Let's start by stating the obvious: More and more organizations are focused on meeting customer service expectations, guaranteeing end-to-end business process delivery and modernizing IT infrastructures.But what does this mean for IT operations teams?

If we approach this question using an iceberg analogy, the tip would probably be an easy observation, such as "IT operations needs to adopt a business-centric way of thinking." But dealing with all the underlying change that feeds into this evolving way of thinking can sink or float an organization.

IT operations teams face a whole new host of considerations: how best to work with emerging IT teams responsible for virtual or cloud-based environments; how to address new requirements around business process delivery; what performance management solutions will best help teams understand service levels across complex, distributed application environments.

Monitoring the performance of IT environments traditionally has involved tools that measure resource consumption and availability of individual servers, databases, applications, networks and other IT components. But these products were never intended to work as an integrated solution spanning multiple IT domains. They were not built to provide end-to-end visibility across the multi-tiered application environments we see today.

A fragmented approach to performance monitoring just doesn't cut it anymore. It hinders cross-team collaboration and often results in problem resolution taking way more time than necessary.

Measuring resource consumption and availability is ineffective when it comes to understanding service delivery, analyzing response times from an end-user perspective or determining how critical applications are performing within virtual, cloud or web-based environments.

With business process delivery and the end user experience becoming the ultimate measures of success or failure, it is time for IT operations teams to consider adopting horizontal, next generation application performance monitoring solutions.

Agentless, transaction-based APM solutions provide a single window into how an enterprise application stack and all of its infrastructure dependencies are performing. They make it easy for IT operations teams to organize and analyze the application payload messages, TCP/IP communications data, and hop-by-hop response times for every individual transaction.

IT operations teams gain the horizontal visibility needed to monitor end-to-end business process delivery and quickly isolate application, network or third-party service connection issues affecting the end customer experience — capabilities that are key to ensuring an organization stays afloat.

I'd like to share with you the top five reasons to choose APM:

1. Improved cross-team collaboration — proactively coordinate problem resolution without deploying multiple-point solutions or collecting application, network and transaction response time performance data from several sources.

2. End-to-end visibility into service quality and business process delivery — see what an end-user is experiencing and understand where business activities slow down or fail.

3. Faster problem resolution — capture the evidence they need to shorten troubleshooting times and significantly reduce mean-time-to-resolution without having to recreate problems or wait for them to happen again.

4. Quicker time to value — achieve fast deployment and the ability to keep pace with rapidly changing service, application and infrastructure environments via agentless, network-based instrumentation.

5. Infrastructure modernization — monitor service level agreements and application response times within complex, multi-tiered application environments that involve third party software-as-a-service, virtual or cloud-based components.

Now I'd love to hear your top reasons for deploying a horizontal APM solution.

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Marc Borbas
Marc is vice president of marketing at INETCO Systems Limited, a leading expert in business transaction management software for the financial services and payments industry.
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