SolarWinds has released findings from a new report, Driving Business Performance Through Application Performance Management, conducted in partnership with GigaOm. The report surveyed executive leaders to explore performance management strategies and the evolving role of application performance management (APM) in achieving business goals and customer value delivery.

Executives from organizations categorized as proactive, reported using performance management strategies to deliver innovation and meet broader business goals, and implementing APM tools with advanced monitoring features such as real-time user experience monitoring, and providing a composite view of log and performance data.

“Technology professionals that leverage performance management and monitoring tools to achieve high-level business goals — surpassing downtime, poor connection, and slow performance to create a truly customer-centric user experience — enjoy better chances of keeping pace in ever-changing markets and achieving overall business success,” said Denny LeCompte, general manager, application management, SolarWinds. “Integrating robust APM tools presents the opportunity to transform any business and create a strong competitive advantage.”

However, the report also revealed another trend – the majority of business leaders set priorities based on what can be easily fixed versus what matters most to customers. For 61% of business leaders surveyed, the primary driver of performance management strategies is to diagnose and resolve problems as quickly as possible, followed by managing the complex application environment (57%). These organizations were categorized as reactive, driven by managing day-to-day tasks and troubleshooting application issues, rather than a focus on end-user experience.

“To remain competitive in today’s business landscape, organizations must deliver not only top products and services, but also a customer experience that rivals competitors and exceeds expectations. But we believe complexity and expense are hindering many organizations from doing that,” LeCompte continued. “Given that managing custom applications and websites is the new normal for technology pros, SolarWinds will continue to address the complexities stemming from this shift in a way very few can — through our deep connection to tech pros and by offering easy-to-use, affordable solutions. We are committed to addressing the needs of our customers and making their jobs easier as the business landscape they support evolves.”

Key Findings

By surveying executives from both proactive and reactive organizations, the new report, Driving Business Performance Through Application Performance Management, has revealed how performance management strategies can give organizations a competitive edge.

Primary Driver of Application Performance Management Tools and Strategies

The primary driver, according to 61% of executive decision makers from reactive organizations, is to diagnose and fix problems; this is followed by managing complex application environments (57%).

Both criteria are seen as a higher priority than delivering the best possible customer experience (52%). While it’s important to troubleshoot issues, this suggests that priorities are set by looking at what can easily be fixed first, vs. prioritizing what matters most to customers.

Prioritization of Criteria Related to Customer Experience

66% of proactive organizations see customer experience criteria as important, compared to only 34% of reactive organizations.

Proactive respondents were nearly twice as likely to value customer experience criteria as important. All criteria matter, but for the proactive group, customer-related criteria matters the most.

Most Important Features of APM Tools

  • 65% of proactive organizations have comprehensive performance monitoring coverage of the DevOps toolchain, compared to 18% of reactive organizations.
  • Proactive organizations consistently value more advanced APM features (54%), such as measuring user experience in real time (44%); providing a composite view of log and performance data (35%); and having a ‘live tail’ feed of logs and other data sources (32%).
  • Contrarily, reactive organizations value advanced features by under 30%.

To download the full report, please visit

The findings of GigaOm’s Driving Business Performance Through Application Performance Management report are based on a survey fielded in March 2019, which yielded 358 responses from business professionals including direct/department heads, CIO/CTO, VP/assistant VP, CEO, general manager, president, SVP, CFO, partner/chairman/board member, COO, and CDO, operating in organizations that have between 500 – 10K+ employees from various vertical markets. Vertical markets include technology, hardware, and software; aerospace and defense; manufacturing and automotive; banking and financial services; healthcare; retail and hospitality; education and trainings; business and legal consulting services; energy and utilities; oil and gas, transformation services; and logistics. Respondents answered several context-setting questions to categorize their organization as proactive or reactive, regarding digital transformation, hybrid cloud, multi-cloud, or public cloud-first strategies, maturity of IT operations, and if/how their line of business drives technology change.