UPDATED 09:00 EDT / JUNE 22 2021

APPS

PagerDuty brings more automation to its incident response platform

PagerDuty Inc. said today it’s beefing up its incident response platform with a new add-on product that helps responders diagnose and respond to problems with their applications in real time.

The capability was announced during PagerDuty’s Summit21 event, together with a new, higher-tier subscription plan and more features around service mapping, change intelligence and root cause analysis.

PagerDuty is one of the leading players in the observability business. It sells a cloud-based monitoring platform that’s used to notify developers and engineers of any technical issues with their applications and the infrastructure they run on. The company’s toolbox can be used to troubleshoot any issues that are found as quickly as possible, helping companies avoid downtime.

PagerDuty Runbook Actions is the latest add-on to that platform. It gives customers a way to delegate diagnostic and remedial automation tasks to incident responders. A runbook is a routine compilation of procedures and operations.

Runbook Actions will become generally available in the fall, helping responders resolve incidents faster than before by running prescribed automated tasks such as scripts and system commands to fix the affected production environments.

International Data Corp. analyst Stephen Elliot said PagerDuty Runbook Actions is a welcome addition to the company’s platform, since customers want more runbook automation capabilities. “As CIOs and CEOs continue to make DevOps investments a priority, now is the time for people to focus on automating DevOps tasks and processes to ensure those investments are maximized,” he added.

Resolving incidents faster is the aim of PagerDuty’s new Customer Service Ops Business level plan too. It’s aimed at customer service teams that want to be more proactive and solve issues more quickly, the company said.

The plan will provide customer service teams in Zendesk and other tools with real-time status updates of “critical customer-impacting issues,” PagerDuty explained. Those teams will have the power to immediately respond and engage with experts across their organization to accelerate resolution times, with an aim to improve overall customer satisfaction.

The new Service Graph feature, meanwhile, gives users a way to discover, map and visualize instantly the business and technical service dependencies that power their digital ecosystems, PagerDuty said. When it’s made available in the summer, users will be able to view the health of these services at a glance, assess the impact of any incidents involving them and zero in on the most probable cause of the issue.

“Service Graph could help us quickly understand the state of our complex system; improving our ability to understand our customers’ experience and helping us more quickly remediate an issue,” said Andy Domeier, senior director of technology at SPS Commerce Inc., an early adopter of the new feature.

Customers will also be able to look forward to new Event Intelligence capabilities within PagerDuty’s platform that are designed to eliminate the noise and complexity they face. For instance, Change Correlation is a new feature that surfaces the changes in an application’s underlying infrastructure that are most likely to have caused an incident, based on analysis of similar incidents.

Meanwhile, Outlier Incident draws on historical incident and alert data to define issues that come up as “anomalies,” “rare occurrences” or “frequent offenders.” This helps teams to identify frequent problems that can be tackled using automation remediation, as well as unique incidents that may require a more ad hoc fix.

PagerDuty Chief Product Officer Sean Scott said the new features deliver on the company’s vision of empowering full-service ownership. “We are moving digital operations management beyond incident response by giving teams automation capabilities that empower flexibility, visibility and accountability to manage urgent work across the enterprise,” he said.

Analyst Holger Mueller of Constellation Research Inc. told SiliconANGLE that what enterprises want to see is complete automation, with horizontally and vertically integrated suites that can help them to run their businesses in simpler ways.

“PagerDuty is on the path toward providing that as it evolves from a pure-play ticket and messaging app,” Mueller said. “In a sense it has been more successful in this expansion than the likes of Slack or ServiceNow. But it will need to show these new offerings and features are capable of managing enterprises’ next-generation applications any better. The verdict will be out later this year with the first stages of customer adoption.”

Photo: PagerDuty

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