Andrew Hittle

‘Don’t Boil The Ocean’ and Other Insights From #Perform2015

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Sherri Cruz avatar

Performance, performance, performance.

That’s the focus of Perform 2015, Dynatrace LLC’s three — day user conference. The conference runs through tomorrow in Orlando.

Dynatrace makes digital performance software used by companies such as Yahoo, Netflix, Panera Bread Co., Best Buy and Cisco Systems.

“This isn’t a fun fling,” said Andrew Hittle, senior vice president of Dynatrace, at today’s morning session, urging attendees to learn as much as possible.

Hittle likened conference — goers to “digital astronauts,” moving from APM (application performance management) to DPM (digital performance management).

Learning Opportunities

Improving CX

Attendees — about 3,000 information technology professionals from 41 countries — are getting hands — on training and sharing best practices with colleagues. At dozens of breakout sessions, led by Dynatrace customers such as Pandora Media and Sirius XM Holdings attendees are getting into the nitty gritty of how to use data to garner insights in order to improve performance, and ultimately the customer experience.

Attendees include representatives from Microsoft, The Sherwin — Williams Co., NodeSource and Volkswagen AG.

Here are some insights from the conference:

R. “Ray” Wang, principal analyst and founder of Constellation Research Inc.

  • “Don’t boil the ocean.” Begin with a minimum viable product, solving for customer experience. Start with a cupcake. Then move on to the cake and finally, the wedding cake. Plan to boil the ocean later.
  • 52 percent of companies that were on the Fortune 500 list in 2000 are no longer there because their business models were disrupted. For example, the iPhone killed several business models by including digital video, navigation and a flashlight on the device. Flashlight manufacturers were disrupted by the iPhone.
  • Digital performance management will be cemented in its ability to transform data into actionable insights.
  • Innovation in the business model that takes advantage of technologies is more important than the technologies themselves.
  • Data for design. The Disney MagicBand, for example, collects data about the user and uses the data to design the customer experience at Disney parks.
  • Design is the humanizer of the digital experience. Apps need to be built with humanity in mind, which means design thinking.

Gopal Brugalette, senior architect for performance engineering, Nordstrom

  • “A culture around customer helps drive the conversation around performance. When you have a culture that’s focused on customer experience, then performance becomes very important.”
  • Nordstrom has been engaged in performance engineering and APM for about five years now. Performance-focused IT affects sales. Slow load-times have an adverse affect on conversion rates.
  • “Even when customers are just looking for reasons to spend their money with us, they still won’t do it if performance is bad. Performance matters.”
  • “If you give people food, they will come.” Share what you’re doing in information technology with the rest of the company through talks and presentations, brown — bag lunches and town halls. Nordstrom holds “NED” talks, a play on TED talks.
  • Performance of your app’s features need to be on par with the functionality of your feature.
  • What works this year, might not work next year. It’s like in farming or gardening. Your tomatoes might do well one year and poorly the next. “What works for a certain period of time is not always going to continue work for you.”
  • When you do the right thing for the customer, then good things happen.”

Check out more from the conference at PerfBytes, which is podcasting live from Perform.