The information gap
A few milliseconds can make a world of difference to success or failure within the trading environment. With information sprawled across an array of solutions - third party vendors, stock market tickers, and so on - it was critical for the company that each of these content feeds performed at the optimum level. The company used a tool called MTV to monitor the availability and suitability of each information source and check that it was completed promptly and correctly. But there were still gaps in the information that could tell them if their critical business application was functioning properly or if pending issues needed to be addressed.
The team - manager for monitoring and control; lead engineer monitoring; vendor manager - began looking for a solution that could tie all of the critical information together to give them a single, unified view of their environment supporting their trading application. Could one tool collect, aggregate, interpret, and report simultaneously within a single dashboard?
StackState: One System, Multiple Views, and a Dash of Time Travel
In the second quarter of 2019, the company piloted Dynatrace, but found it unable to meet its customization requirements. The team then turned to StackState. StackState's Relationship-Based Observability platform merges all the existing, siloed topology data from tools such as CMDBs, Puppet, Jenkins, and Kubernetes into a real-time, unified topology.
From the start, StackState demonstrated value by integrating several of the company's existing tools and services - Nagios, ServiceNow CMDB, MTV, and the backend engine Cronacle - into a custom dashboard. The next step was adding in a MuleSoft API and Azure Cloud subscriptions. But delivering end-to-end visibility into the company's stack was just the beginning.
Because StackState also understands what changed in the environment and when, it could immediately flag significant performance anomalies - not all of the company's data sources were being monitored regularly.
Identifying these blind spots helped explain the slow response time for solving previous incidents - response teams were missing critical information. Further, previous integrations had led to some data being misaligned, misnamed, and misclassified - a damaging state of affairs for any company, but more so for one whose business relies on infinitesimal data updates. Better yet, StackState gave the team the power to time travel, so they can go back to the exact moment when an incident was triggered and retrieve the status of any component in the IT stack, helping to deterministically pinpoint root cause and speed resolution times.
Ultimately, however, it was StackState's unified view that provided the biggest boost to the company. From monitoring and control to IT delivery to the different business teams, each stakeholder can now see the impact of a single change on their own customized dashboard, in a language they understand. Consequently, like an orchestra playing diverse instruments from the same sheet of music, the entire organization now works together in new and dynamic ways, producing sweet songs for their investor.