Application performance moves front and centre in business strategy
Pre-COVID-19, application performance was an afterthought for many South African businesses, since digital channels were typically not business critical. However, all this has changed. Businesses have evolved into the online space.
As the world evolves and adapts to the new normal, consumers are developing a preference for online systems, thanks to their convenience, safety and the fact that they allow for 24x7 availability of trading.
Vidashni Pillay, Managing Director at ViC IT, says: “The COVID-19 lockdown drove consumers online in record numbers, catching many companies unaware. Large retail and service enterprises were forced to move a great deal of their operations to online platforms, with little or no time to research what the uptake would be and how their applications would perform under pressure.
“There will be no turning back from digital once consumers have enjoyed the convenience of applying for loans, getting insurance cover, viewing vehicles for sale or shopping for groceries online.”
But for enterprises, this sudden shift has increased pressure to ensure that digital doors are always open. Products need to be available 100% of the time because customers are now global. System availability and uptime become crucial to retain customers and maintain brand reputation.
“This means application performance testing, previously not a key requirement, becomes a front and centre priority,” explains Pillay.
The increased volume of traffic to these systems for events like Black Friday, Cyber Monday – and heightened trade during Christmas – has made it imperative for online retailers to understand the saturation or failure points of their systems.
The old adage of test, test and test again becomes vital, and using the correct application performance testing toolset to do so is of paramount importance. To test whether IT systems are robust and available 24x7x365, AI and machine learning should be deployed to mimic performance and identify failure points earlier, thus allowing enterprises to scale out systems easier, better, faster and more cost-effectively.
“The right toolsets should deliver ease of use, consistent results, consistently updated industry best practices, AI and machine learning capability for faster turnaround times, and they should be built for scale and integration into the DevSecOps model,” she advises.
With best practice application performance testing, organisations can ensure system uptime and a consistent customer experience, and avoid failures that could result in a loss of revenue and negatively impact the brand’s reputation. It also indicates to the system owners when they are required to upscale the system to meet the demand of increased trading.
What are you doing in your organisation to promote customer satisfaction in your online platform?