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New survey finds complexity, at 29%, is the leading challenge to assuring application performance.

Posted by Asena Hertz on Dec 19, 2019 8:56:13 AM
Asena Hertz
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This blog is part of a series in which we share some of the results from our 2019 State of Performance in Modern Applications Survey.

Prefer to binge read the results? Download the full report here.


When we asked about the biggest challenge to assuring application performance, application complexity took the lead (29%), followed by collaboration challenges (24%) and skills gaps (18%).


What’s causing the complexity? The very technologies that are making speed, elasticity, and agility possible are also responsible for an inordinate amount of complexity. 

Our 2019 State of Multicloud Survey from earlier this year found that 62% of respondents were on their container/cloud native journey. Yet even as containers become the de facto unit of modern applications, there are tradeoffs. 

1) There are more changes to the environment.

Containerization has enabled developers to rapidly and continuously deploy new features and

updates to their applications. In the 2018 DORA State of DevOps report, respondents cited

significant improvements as a result of implementing CI/CD:

Deployment frequency



Change lead time

1-6 months

1-7 days

Change failure rate



DevOps teams’ continuous implementation/delivery of smaller and more frequent development

releases leads to more changes to environments than ever before. With speed comes the need

to have a way to manage constant change in production.

2) There are more pieces to manage. (Hello, microservices.)

With containers, we can now break down an application into microservices. Loosely coupled services have the benefit of reducing interdependencies within applications, but for operations teams it means there are also more components to manage.

Morgan Stanely forecasts a 23% 5-year CAGR in total workloads and container instances through 2023.

Source: Morgan Stanley Research “A New Software Stack for the Digital Era,” May 2019

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3) More Types of Infrastructure to Manage, Multicloud & Beyond

The portability of containers allows organizations to build applications once and run anywhere—across multiple clouds, data centers, edge, and IoT. Now we are even seeing single applications distributed across a heterogeneous mix of infrastructure.

More than 50% of large enterprises will deploy at least six edge computing use cases deployed for IoT or immersive experiences by year-end 2023, versus less than 1% in 2019.

Source: Gartner “Exploring the Edge: 12 Frontiers of Edge Computing” May 2019 (ID G00388219)

As organizations modernize their applications, they are also compelled to reevaluate how to manage performance. What do you use to manage application resources?

Is it fully automatic (software makes decisions, not people)? Does it keep up with rapid changes, operating continuously based on real-time resource demands? Does it scale with the number of applications and services you have to manage? Can it manage your modern applications across on-prem and cloud environments (and beyond)? Does it seamlessly integrate with your existing workflows? As application complexity increases, your answers to these questions determine how effectively you reap the benefits of cloud native technologies and architectures.  

Read: Managing Containers & Multicloud Complexity at Scale

Topics: Containers

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