Dynatrace and Keynote

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Content Copyright © 2015 Bloor. All Rights Reserved.
Also posted on: The Norfolk Punt

The Dynatrace Digital Performance platform provides one of the best ways for IT to manage the end-user experience. It offers complete visibility across the whole delivery chain and issues can be located in the lines of code responsible (ie, it delivers fast root cause analysis using what it calls PurePath). It is doing very well in the marketplace and 2014/15 (financial year 2015) was a big year for Dynatrace, as this is when it became independent from Compuware (in Sept 2014; it is now owned by private equity firm Thoma Bravo; Compuware retains its profitable mainframe APM – Application Performance Management – tools and is also owned by Thoma Bravo).

Dynatrace now claims over a thousand new customers (31% growth; it has 7,500 global customers); it reports 95% growth in emerging markets such as Brazil, Russia, India and China; and has a community ecosystem with over 100k members. What is not to like? 

Well, back in September 2014 I remember being a bit concerned that Dynatrace was rather IT-systems focused, although this isn’t unusual for anything as technically advanced as this tool. It was user friendly and extremely useful – for one class of technically sophisticated users. It provided what an IT professional would need to manage and improve application performance and the user experience for end users in the business – and did it very well – but I couldn’t really see it as a tool that many end users would choose for themselves. Dynatrace itself agrees that, while the application performance and end user experience insights it provides are useful well beyond the IT department (to digital business owners, product teams, and even executive management), broader adoption of this data by the business was an area of opportunity.

Dynatrace has now addressed this issue, by incorporating Keynote, also owned by Thoma Bravo, into its offering. Keynote rounds out Dynatrace with rich analytics and mobile testing capabilities, and is particularly focused on the needs of the citizen developer in the digital enterprise – it complements Dynatrace well. Howard Wilson, who was Keynote’s Chief Commercial Officer and Executive Vice President, is now in charge of a business unit covering both Dynatrace and Keynote cloud-based services (read his thoughts on the merger here). John Van Siclen remains as CEO of Dynatrace, and sees the combined companies as driving the digital transformation of their customers.

The key USP for the merged product lines is a new “Omni-Channel” experience, which provides visibility for every digital interaction between customers, partners, and IoT devices. It covers real-user monitoring, synthetic monitoring and the provision of performance analytics for mobile apps, hybrid apps, mobile web apps and plain old web and thick client applications. There is, of course, always a possible cultural clash to manage when two products merge, but meeting people from both products sharing a stand at the Jenkins User Conference this week, suggests that this won’t be a serious problem (helped by the fact that their different customerbases don’t overlap too much, and that they both have the same owners).

I regard application performance management (APM), including management of the end-user experience, as an important part of good governance for automated business services – and the new Dynatrace is one of a few key tools that can really help an organisation manage its business users’ experience.