“To make an omelette, you’ll have to break a few eggs”. No matter how thoroughly you test your pre-prod environment, issues always pop up when your application is live. But while you can’t predict how your software will react in the wild, you can give yourself all the necessary tools to patch them up quickly when they arise.
Mean Time To Detection (MTTD) and Mean Time To Resolution (MTTTR) are metrics used to describe how long it takes to detect, identify and resolve issues on your web app. It directly reflects how well you can troubleshoot issues and bring support to your users.
So how can you speed up your MTTD & MTTR?
Up your observability game
The first step to fixing any issue depends on how long it takes for you to detect and identify problems. To that end, you really need tools, tools, tools!
You need to monitor your system and collect logs, yes — but it is not enough. It only give you pieces of the puzzle. You need to have visibility across your software so that you can quickly detect even the problems you could not predict.
Observability combines Logs, Traces, Session Replays, Network Activity and Metrics (If you want to know more about observability and what tools you need, check out this article).
Observability is a step above monitoring — it’s like keeping an eagle eye over your entire web app: it gives you the full context behind everything that happens so you know the why. That you are always ready to act as soon as an issue is detected.
Collaborate with your team
If you are resolving issues on your own, you are doing it wrong. Collaboration is the buzz word nowadays, and for good reasons: teams that work together are simply more productive.
When a customer reports an issue, it travels: Support receives the ticket and tries to talk to the user to understand what happened. If Support can’t fix the problem, then it sends it out to the Engineering team in charge of reproducing it. If and when the problem is identified, the QA team then runs tests to make sure that the problem is resolved and that it won’t rear its head again.
To speed up time to resolution you need to make sure that each gear of your troubleshooting machine is oiled and moving smoothly. Collaboration must be seamless between your teammates.
This means being able to share issues that have been identified with team members, to discuss and trade comments on them, to open tickets etc. all from the same platform.
Use a unified troubleshooting platform
This brings me to my last point: If you want to be quick, you need to minimize the time wasted. When it comes to debugging, there are two ways you can waste your time:
- By not effectively collaborating with your teammates, as we’ve mentioned,
- And by constantly having to switch between many different tools
You have Logging Tools, Exception Trackers, Real-User Monitoring, Application Performance Monitoring, Collaboration Tools, Ticketing Systems and the list goes on. To speed up MTTD and MTTR, you better gather all your debugging and collaboration tools around a unified troubleshooting platform.
That way, you have everything you need, within your reach.