RigD Enhances User Experience in Latest Release of Slack App
This new release from RigD advances machine learning assisted DevOps and IT Operations significantly with these major new capabilities:
- Performance Benchmarks: Saving Minutes in Getting Your Critical Application Back Up
- Streamlining the User Experience with Menus and Buttons
- Integrated Notification to the RigD Team When Errors are Encountered
- Four new PagerDuty Activities
Saving Minutes in Getting Your Critical Application Back Up
In our previous release we delivered deeper PagerDuty integration to speed up incident lifecycle activities from Slack. The response has been tremendous as those activities cut short the time required to perform incident tasks, from 38 to 75% for an individual task. Shaving 10 seconds from an individual tasks can be very important in the heat of a major incident when your incident commander is looking to keep the team up to date and make the right decisions. One might think that it is slower to get data from a back end system (PagerDuty) and bring it forward into Slack, but we have found that the APIs in PagerDuty are very performant and measured that the difference in load times with large data objects back to Slack are not noticeable to the end user. When we put a variety of tasks together that would be expected to manage an incident through the lifecycle we see an even greater time saving for the RigD Slack App. Here you can see a number of critical steps across the lifecycle of the incident. The RigD Slack app saves significant time on all tasks and over that time frame you can easy save more than five minutes. While this may seem at first blush as not very significant, in the middle of a critical escalation, these activities in our bot save time allowing critical thinking of support operations and developers to focus on the application and identifying the issue and synthesizing the remediation work. You can see one of the largest gains in using the bot is to gather logs and configuration and display it right in context for all to see in the support channel. Switching context to your log management system, or the place where you keep your deployed configuration can be a huge waste of time while everyone on the support channel is just hanging on for the wild ride.
RigD’s Latest Release Enhances User Experience
Streamlining the User Experience with Menus and Buttons
Using Slack’s UI constructs we have added Menus and Buttons that allow the user to select from a set of activities that are relevant to their context. A few examples showing this are below:
With these four images you can see that in context we show the user a set of activities as buttons they can perform which are the logical next steps, such as seeing open incidents, who’s on call or creating a new incident for that PagerDuty service. When you list all the open incidents, each incident has a button where you can easily select which activity to perform. Finally you can create a new incident, a new PagerDuty activity we have added for teams that like to create incidents manually. You can easily see that the new structure far surpasses the Slash commands that come with rudimentary bots.
Integrated Notification to the RigD Team When Errors are Encountered
Not surprisingly, we love Slack and use the intra-workspace communication capabilities (from your Slack environment in the RigD channel to the RigD home workspace Ops channel) to let the RigD team know when you have encountered a problem. No switching contexts even for error or bug submission. On the RigD end we eat our cooking and can respond to you with a simple button click.
Four New PagerDuty Activities
Our last release was primarily focused on PagerDuty activities and with this release we added four new activities, based on our users experience and requests.
- Show PagerDuty Incident Log – Continuing with the need to surface the information that PagerDuty maintains into Slack, users wanted to see the incident log.
- Create PagerDuty Digest Flow – Now that you have seen what a flow is, you can create a flow from a Digest and start editing a flow from the starting point of a support session which had all the relevant steps as a starting point. This is a huge time saver.
- List PagerDuty Teams – We found that some users, when starting the deployment of the RigD Bot, did not know the exact names of key teams and knowing this in context sped up the onboarding process.
- Create PagerDuty Incident – Well, not all incidents are created from machine generated data and we had users ask for this capability. Interestingly some companies use PagerDuty without automated machine incidents and this activity is critical for success of those organizations.