The problem with many SaaS platforms is they will guarantee 99% uptime, but they don’t actually know how to achieve it. One of the biggest upsides of SaaS is the fact that clients will have access to their information without having to store it. However, if you can’t reach 100% uptime, you’re going to have to explain to your client why they can’t access their information. I’ve tried many different solutions to achieve this metric, and the following tactics are the best way for you to reach 100% uptime.
Monitor all Changes
There are too many SaaS companies that don’t have a communication system in place to note all changes made. You’ll make it much easier to find the root of your problem with this system in place. Many errors and outages come from the smallest changes, and if they are not communicated you could be spending hours trying to locate the source of the outage. In terms of overall monitoring, get into the practice of starting with the end user to optimize your application. You’ll learn a lot about what is slowing down your platform from the end user, and you’ll be able to drastically improve performance by making relatively minor changes.
Implement Synthetic Monitoring
The worst phone call in the world comes from a client who has to notify you that their application is down before you catch it. Synthetic monitoring, or monitoring app performance from the client’s perspective, will alleviate almost all of these phone calls. Your uptime and performance analytics details will be much more detailed and you’ll have the peace of mind in seeing what your client sees. Instead of monitoring within your own infrastructure, you will have the ability to improve your APM solution with greater end-to-end insights.
Thoroughly Schedule Each Release
It is a good practice to have a release schedule, or better yet, an infographic, to outline every step of the release along the way. By implementing this, everyone involved in the release can stay up to date with the progress made on the release. So many companies make the mistake of missing a step, or two, or three, when they schedule their releases, and those missed steps come back to haunt them when the release fails. Launching a release doesn’t need to be as stressful as most companies make it if you do your due diligence. Rushing your releases will only end poorly for you and all of your clients who depend on your service.
One of the biggest issues throughout many SaaS companies is the lack of communication between departments. Get everyone from sales to operations to engineering to development on the same page to make sure nothing slips through the cracks. Create a list of KPIs that should be brought to every meeting, along with any changes that have been made or are scheduled to be made in the future. When a company does not communicate well internally they end up having bigger issues than uptime, so don’t get in the habit of being disconnected. Every company has a different way of communicating internally. My advice is to try a few methods to see what works best for you. I’m a firm believer in face-to-face meetings to ensure an attentive group. You’d be surprised at how much more productive every department will be when they’re all in the loop.
I always have my partner’s best interests in mind, and 100% uptime is one of my main concerns. Build and strengthen your relationships with all of your partners by taking the necessary steps to grant them access to their information at any time.