Jay McDonald, managing director and co-chair for modern delivery at Deloitte, said the IT services provider will now provide traditional DevOps and observability consulting expertise along with a set of instances of the Dynatrace Software Intelligence Platform that it will manage on behalf of organizations.
Deloitte opted for the Dynatrace platform because it employs a single agent for collecting metrics, logs and traces that are then analyzed by its Davis artificial intelligence (AI) engine to enable observability, said McDonald.
While there is a growing appreciation for observability to enable DevOps teams to identify the root causes of IT issues before they become major problems, deploying an observability platform requires a lot of specialized expertise. Many organizations are opting to rely on third-party organizations such as Deloitte to manage that task within the context of a larger DevOps workflow, said McDonald.
Managing those workflows has become especially challenging for many organizations to deploy and maintain as they move to build and deploy microservices-based applications, he added.
Michael Allen, vice president of worldwide partners for Dynatrace, said there are now already more than 4,000 organizations using the Dynatrace Software Intelligence Platform, a number that will continue to increase as observability platforms are consumed as a service.
It’s not clear at what rate DevOps teams are embracing observability. The concept has always been a core DevOps principle, but, for the most part, more mature DevOps teams have only been able to achieve what amounts to continuous monitoring of pre-defined metrics. Observability platforms promise to surface anomalies indicative of IT issues before they escalate; DevOps teams can then launch queries to better determine their root cause and potential severity.
One of the benefits of the Davis AI engine is that machine learning algorithms surface the root cause of many of those issues without requiring DevOps teams to know exactly how to construct the right query, noted Allen.
However, the biggest challenge many DevOps teams encounter is they lack the skills required to deploy and manage observability platforms. In fact, many of them are now relying on third parties to manage a wide range of DevOps platforms so they can concentrate their efforts on actual workflows. Hiring and retaining DevOps professionals also has become more challenging as the total number of applications being built and deployed expands beyond DevOps teams’ abilities to effectively manage.
One way or another, the days when IT teams determined the root cause of an IT issue by process of elimination are finally coming to an end. DevOps teams are gaining more visibility into their application environments in ways that surface more meaningful actionable intelligence, regardless of who sets and manages the observability platform. The opportunity to employ that intelligence to improve overall application resiliency and drive a wide range of digital business transformation initiatives is well within DevOps teams’ reach.