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Uptime Blog

A Hero’s Welcome for Toolchains

A Hero's Welcome for Toolchains

When I visited my parents recently, I found my 79-year-old dad struggling to get the same information into multiple insurance and medical systems, emails, and personal notes. After a while I noticed that without toolchains, he was typing the same information over and over again.

There was a small part of me that was enjoying watching this fiasco, of course, but my conscience got the better of me and I showed him the magic of copy-and-paste, which he gleefully employed.

This, my friends, is what counts as automation in my parents’ house.

Alas, this breakthrough discovery will not get you a hero’s welcome in the office. At least not in our office.

Turns out, though, a ton of companies are still using copy-and-paste to move information through incident management processes and even software development and deployment. Development and operations teams email status updates and instructions to each other. Service desks and incident teams send text messages.

We tell our customers (and anyone else who will listen) that connecting systems and automating processes is one of the most impactful things they can do to increase efficiency. In fact, enabling those toolchains is one of the things we do best as a platform to deliver information in context and on time.

But wait, you say. We tell our customers to chain up their tools and systems, but what about us? Aha! Good question.

A Hero’s Welcome for Toolchains


Fortunately, we do use our own integration platform and some pretty gnarly toolchains to create some very effective processes for DevOps, incident management, and more. Here are a few examples.

Resolving product defects
We’ve been a DevOps shop for a long time, so we don’t have clear lines between development and operations. Still, the greatest delay industry-wide is the time a ticket sits in the queue before an engineer touches it.

Every minute of delay is more time customers have an experience with us that is below our standards. Not acceptable. It would be like me just watching my dad type the same things into all those systems.

With our own product as the spoke of the wheel, the Zendesk customer support tool engages JIRA, which integrates with chat tools to move the process forward and eventually close it.

Monitoring and automating releases
Continuous automated testing is the key to successful DevOps processes. If code isn’t right, Pingdom sniffs it out and xMatters routes the information to the right person, perhaps the last person to touch the code, who can update it and check it back in.

When the code is back to snuff, xMatters makes sure it gets back into the deployment queue.

Major incident management
Service desks are fantastic at spitting out tickets and flinging alerts around the office. My dad would be in good company at many businesses, where people on the front lines copy and paste information to create tickets, and then paste it again into notifications, where incident managers copy and paste it before sending emails to incident team members.

We’ve chosen a different way. Our team members can import content from the ticket directly into messages. Incident team members can open a chat room in Slack or another messaging service right from the incident. And since chat room messages are preserved in JIRA, moving processes forward from a central location is easy.

Learn more

devops, devops toolchain, xmatters devops, xmatters

Read our new white paper on how we connect toolchains.

You can find much more detail in our new white paper, 3 Use Cases for Connected Systems, available now on our website. The paper walks you through the three use cases, including the integrations that we use at each step.

If you’re not already using two-way integrations that hand information back and forth, this paper shows why you should be.

Don’t make me tell my dad on you.

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