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Dynatrace Perform 2023: Day One

How to create software that works perfectly.

I attended Dynatrace Perform 2023. This is my sixth Perform User Conference but the first in-person over the last three years.

Rick McConnell, CEO of Dynatrace, kicked off the event by sharing his thoughts on the company's momentum and vision. The company is focused on adding value to the IT ecosystem and the cloud environment.

As the world continues to change at a rapid pace, this enables breakout opportunities to occur. Dynatrace strives to enable clients to be well-positioned for the upcoming post-Covid and post-recession recovery.

The cloud delivers undeniable benefits for companies and their customers. It enables companies to deliver software and infrastructure much faster. That's why we continue to see the growth of hyper scale cloud providers. Companies rely on the cloud to take advantage of category and business growth opportunities.

However, with the growth comes complexity. 71% of CIOs say increasing difficult to manage all of the data that is being produced. It is beyond human ability to manage and make sense of all the data. This creates a need and opportunity for automation and observability to address these needs.

There is an Increased focus on cloud optimization on multiple fronts. Key areas of focus are to reduce costs, drive more reliability and availability to ultimately drive more value for customers. Observability is moving from an optional "nice to have" to a mandatory "must have."

The industry is at an inflection point with an opportunity to drive change right now. Organizations need end-to-end observability. Dynatrace approaches the problem in a radically different way. Data types need to be looked at collectively and holistically to be more powerful in the management of the ecosystem.

Observability + Security + Business Analytics

The right software intelligence platform can provide end-to-end observability to drive transformational change to business by delivering answers and intelligent automation from data.

End users are no longer willing to accept poor performance from applications. If your application doesn't work or provides an inferior user experience, your customer will find another provider. As such, it is incumbent on businesses to deliver flawless and secure digital interactions that are performant and great all of the time.

New Product Announcements

Consistent with the vision of A world where software works perfectly, not having an incident in the first place, Dynatrace announced four new products today:

  • Grail Data Lakehouse Expansion The Dynatrace Platform’s central data lakehouse technology that stores, contextualizes, and queries data, beyond logs and business events to encompass metrics, distributed traces, and multi-cloud topology and dependencies. This enhances the platform’s ability to store, process, and analyze the tremendous volume and variety of data from modern cloud environments while retaining full data context.

  • Enhanced User Experience with new UX features such as built-in dashboard functionalities and a visual interface to help foster teamwork between technical and business personnel. These new UX features allow Dynatrace Notebooks to be used, which is an interactive document capability that allows IT, development, security, and business users to work together using code, text, as well as multimedia to construct, analyze, and disseminate insights from exploratory, causal-AI analytics projects to ensure better coordination and decision making throughout the company.

  • Dynatrace AutomationEngine features an interactive user interface and no-code and low-code tools that empower groups to make use of Dynatrace's causal-AI analytics for observability and security insights to automate BizDevSecOps procedures over their multi-cloud environments. This automation platform enables IT teams to detect and solve issues proactively or direct them to the right personnel, thus saving time and allowing them to concentrate on complex matters that only humans can handle.

  • Dynatrace AppEngine provides IT, development, security, and business teams with the capability of designing tailored, consistent, and knowledge informed applications with a user-friendly, minimal-code method. Clients and associates are able to build personalized links to sync the Dynatrace platform with technologies over hybrid and multi-cloud surroundings, unify segregated solutions, and enable more personnel from their businesses with smart apps that rely on perceptibility, security, and business knowledge from their ecosystems.

Client Feedback

I had the opportunity to speak with Michael Cabrera, Site Reliability Engineering Leader at Vivint. Michael brought SRE to Vivint after bringing SRE to Home Depot and Delta. Vivint realized they were spending more time firefighting than optimizing and SRE helps to solve this problem.

Michael evaluated more than a dozen solutions comparing features, ease of use, and comprehensiveness of the platform. Dynatrace was a clear winner. It enables SRE and enables a view into what customers are experiencing not available with another tool. By seeing what customers feel, Micheal and his team can be proactive versus reactive.

The SRE team at Vivint has 12 engineers and 200 developers servicing thousands of employees. Field technicians are in customers' homes helping them create and live in a smarter home. Technicians are key stakeholders since they are front-facing to end users.

Dynatrace is providing Vivint with a tighter loop between what customer experience and what they could see in the tech stack. It reduces the time spent troubleshooting and firefighting versus optimizing. Development teams are able to see how their code is performing. Engineers can see how the infrastructure is performing.

Michael feels Grail is a game changer. It allows Vivint to combine logs with business analytics to achieve full observability end-to-end into their entire business. Vivint was a beta tester of the new technology. The tighter feedback loops with deployment showed how the company's engineering policies could further improve. They were able to scale and review performance of apps and infrastructure and see more interconnected services and how things align with each other.

Dynatrace is helping Vivint to manage apps and software through SLOs. They have been able to set up SLOs in a couple of minutes. It's easy to install with one agent without enabling plug-ins or buying add-ons.

SREs can sit with engineering and product teams and show the experience from the tech stack to the customer. It's great for engineering teams to have real-time feedback on performance. They can release code and see performance before, during, and after.

The biggest challenge is having so much more information than had before. They are training to help team members to know what to do with the information and how to drill-down as needed.


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