Why New Relic
Provides a single platform to measure and analyse performance of application code, infrastructure, and customer experience
- Pinpoints performance issues and root causes across hybrid cloud environment
- Provides data to make informed infrastructure scaling decisions
- Measures impact of weekly version release, enabling quick response to any performance degradation
- Integral part of automated workflow to provision new nodes on the Microsoft Azure cloud
As any business leader will confirm, it is more cost effective to grow revenue with existing customers than to constantly try to win new business. The same applies to building an effective team: it is better to develop from within your existing staff than constantly having to hire new team members.
Talentsoft is the European leader in cloud-based talent management software. Its software-as-a-service solutions are used by 1,800 companies and institutions in the public and private sector (from small or medium-sized enterprises to multinationals) and by government agencies to help their employees’ career development. More than nine million users, including employees, their managers, and talent professionals rely on Talentsoft services to maximise and grow their career potential.
Scaling to meet the global talent market
Founded in the Paris suburbs in 2007, Talentsoft has become an increasingly international company, with offices in 22 countries across Asia, Africa, and the Americas, and running its applications in 130 countries and 27 languages. The company’s ethos is to collaborate, move fast, fail, and learn. As Talentsoft strives to work more closely with its customers, it faces a critical challenge: how to ensure its cloud-based services are robust in their delivery but tailored to meet the specific needs of customers in different parts of the world—all while complying with local employment laws. And the company must do so while maintaining rapid growth; in terms of new customers and new infrastructure, the business grew 30% in 2017.
‘We’re in a continuous state of integration and development’, says Talentsoft CIO Julien Villemeur. ‘From a development point of view, we need to know the precise status of the build and testing phase, and that developers have the right resource available when they need it.’
Talentsoft runs a hybrid cloud environment. It owns and manages its own data centres, and partners with Microsoft Azure to leverage the public cloud in order to scale capacity to keep up with user adoption. The company is currently opening a new data centre every three months, so it has adapted to treat ‘Infrastructure as Code’ by fully automating the provisioning, configuration, and creation of nodes. The entire workflow is supervised and monitored through New Relic by Villemeur’s team, and updates to applications are planned weekly. ‘We use New Relic to monitor and supervise our applications throughout this hybrid infrastructure’, says Villemeur.
Developers take full ownership of services
Talentsoft’s engagement with New Relic goes back to 2015. According to Villemeur, Talentsoft relies on New Relic ‘from front to back.’ He explains, ‘On the upstream side, we use New Relic Synthetics and New Relic Insights to make sure our developers have what they need. Downstream, we use New Relic APM and New Relic Infrastructure to ensure we have a detailed understanding of the root cause of any issue…. New Relic is now pervasive in all our operations, not only monitoring application performance but gaining full visibility into how that application performance is impacting our customers.’ As the company looks to advance its DevOps processes, Villemeur notes, ‘We’re currently looking at New Relic Browser as well.’
‘New Relic is now pervasive in all our operations, not only monitoring application performance but gaining full visibility into how that application performance is impacting our customers.’
What has made New Relic essential to Talentsoft is the ability to have a good understanding of the root cause of any performance issue. The company’s developers are able to have a role in supervising and monitoring the overall performance of their services. With this visibility, they have the ownership to fix these issues directly and assume full responsibility for their services.
Building a DevOps mindset
Villemeur’s vision is to establish a true DevOps culture across the organization, and he accepts this is more about mindset than tools: ‘It’s about the people, not the technology—but the technology is an enabler.’
Says Villemeur, ‘Every team, whether in operations or development, has a TV screen showing a New Relic dashboard. The dashboards are easy to tailor to show metrics relevant to each team, but they’re also great for showing common trends. It’s the kind of thing that makes it easier for developers and operations to work more closely together.’
For example, in Talentsoft’s DevTools organization, which is in charge of its CI/CD workflow, the same performance dashboards and Infrastructure pages are displayed on TV screens throughout the workplace.
‘Every team, whether in operations or development, has a TV screen showing a New Relic dashboard. The dashboards are easy to tailor to show metrics relevant to each team, but they’re also great to show common trends.’
Powerful analytics uncover big customer benefits
Ultimately, New Relic underpins Talentsoft’s service delivery. As the business grows, the detail New Relic monitoring reveals enables Villemeur’s team to quickly jump on any service delivery issues.
‘What I like about New Relic is the ability to use New Relic Query Language (NRQL) to create custom dashboards to understand how our customers are impacted by performance. I really like how easy it is to create these different charts and dashboards’, he says. ‘Any Talentsoft employee can have access to this information if they need it. It’s already shown great value and we’re looking to add modules to understand how to implement custom attributes, to better understand the impact of performance on specific customers.’
By providing a more complete picture of the company’s data, New Relic Insights helps Talentsoft make more informed decisions about how to grow effectively. When the company holds its regular capacity planning review, New Relic measurements are the basis for how many servers will be added, or if and where it will reduce infrastructure.
‘New Relic is the solution we lean on in a crisis’, concludes Villemeur. ‘Our developers can drill down to get the kind of details they need to better inform the next round of improvements. Even our sales teams can see exactly what’s going on with a customer.’