The needs of modern applications, mobile users, and cloud services increasingly dominate APM (Application Performance Management) purchase priorities. Buyers are becoming more diverse and demanding, and important user groups now include not only enterprise IT operations teams but also application developers, DevOps leaders, and line-of-business analysts and executives.

SaaS-delivered application performance monitoring and analytics services are emerging as important choices for organizations that need cost-effective, easy-to-deploy APM options to help optimize mobile, cloud, and traditional applications. These services are experiencing a period of rapid innovation and growth as traditional synthetic monitoring services are supplemented with SaaS-enabled real user monitoring (RUM), mobile app and native mobile browser monitoring, advanced analytics, and deep dive application dependency mapping capabilities.

The most advanced SaaS APM services provide end-to-end visibility and analytics across “born on the cloud” applications, traditional complex enterprise environments and hybrid applications. They also leverage existing APM and infrastructure monitoring agents, data warehouses, processes, and infrastructure to enable users to move seamlessly between SaaS and on-premise deployment options.

IDC recommends that customers of all sizes seriously evaluate SaaS-enabled APM monitoring and analytics solutions when determining how to best support their maturing APM requirements. The following factors should be considered:

1. Scalability and implementation

  • Ease of deployment across a wide range of existing infrastructure, applications, and services
  • Ability to scale up in terms of numbers and diversity of users, devices, and transactions
  • Support for in-house and public cloud resources as well as more traditional environments if required
  • Plug-and-play integrations with a wide range of data sources and formats across on-premise and cloud resources
  • Ability to support modern and legacy environments

2. User productivity and ease of use

  • Ease of use in terms of how quickly the full range of users can master the service’s reporting, query, visualization, and analytics features
  • Role-based interfaces and out-of-the-box reports and workflows for IT operations, development, and business users
  • Ability to integrate with existing IT operations workflows and tooling to ease the transition in a DevOps adoption cycle
  • State-of-the-art graphics and visualization
  • Built-in contextual help and support to enable more do-it-yourself training and problem resolution
  • Natural language search and queries across structured and unstructured data sources

3. Advanced analytics and reporting

  • Built-in advanced, predictive analytics and search capabilities enabled by intuitive query and reporting
  • Ability to access and analyze current and historical structured and unstructured monitoring data from existing data warehouses
  • Support for standard protocols and open APIs for access to a broad range of monitoring data
  • Self-learning algorithms that save users from manually maintaining models

Solutions that offer scalability, effective user interfaces, and advanced analytics are most likely to be able to evolve with the needs of organizations over time.

Buyers need to carefully evaluate offerings in terms of both current and emerging requirements and consider the requirements of both initial users and other roles that may want to take advantage of APM in the future. Many customers may start with fairly limited implementations, but they need to expand the scale and scope of APM usage over time as the mix of applications monitored evolves.

Benefits at-a-glance

APM SaaS and analytics solutions frequently meet many of these requirements and deliver a number of benefits, including:

  • Rapid time to value — often delivering usable information and insight in a matter of hours or days
  • The ability to scale spending to match business priorities and to rapidly expand the range of monitored applications as business needs dictate
  • Minimal implementation and training costs thanks to the self-service nature of SaaS, intuitive user interfaces, and built-in self-help resources
  • Greater productivity from IT staff due to less downtime and less training needed
  • Improved end-to-end service levels and end-user productivity and better business performance because of faster problem identification, root-cause analysis, and problem remediation


While initially focused on the needs of modern languages as well as Web and mobile applications, SaaS-delivered APM and analytics services are increasingly capable of providing robust support to traditional, on-premise client/server applications via unified interfaces, search engines, and reporting frameworks.

Development teams, IT operations, and business analysts alike will benefit from the right solution.  When done correctly, APM SaaS and analytics will play an important role in improving service levels and business ability across legacy and modern applications.

Schedule a consultation today to learn how Flagship can help you design and implement an effective APM SaaS and analytics solution.

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