INTERVIEW: Maialen, Application Scripting Developer at Maltem Insight Performance
The measurement of user experience, or “Digital Experience Monitoring” is one of the main components of our MIP Solution. If this tool is in place today, it is largely thanks to the application scenarios developed internally. Meeting with Maialen Bachacou, application script developer at MIP TEAM.
Maialen, can you first tell us about the user experience?
My vision of the user experience is divided into three parts:
- In order to ensure the well-being of the client’s employees, I think it is essential to equip yourself with a tool that measures the user experience. Almost all large companies monitor the performance of their networks, forgetting a little the human part… The Digital Experience Monitoring brings a new vision of the Information System, with the measurement of business applications. From O365 mailbox to the Google drive, through the legacy and up to the “in house” applications, the IT teams recover metrics complementary to those of the infrastructures and networks. Clear and understandable information for all.
- Continuity of service is also important. The advantage with the DEM is that the tests on the applications are done 24/7. The IT teams and the HelpDesk can therefore put themselves in proactive mode and resolve errors, before the user is impacted.
- Finally, if we are talking about the financial part, the availability feedback provides support and factual data for negotiate Cloud provider pricing for example. The SLA (Service Level Agreement) is sometimes difficult to evaluate on web applications. With DEM, there is no longer this lack of visibility that has plagued IT since the explosion of SaaS.
Since when have you been part of the MIP Team, and what are your daily missions?
For almost 5 years, I’ve been alternating between the development of new application scripts (or scenarios), their maintenance, and the analysis of the metrics reported.
My first challenge is to create scripts that reproduce the path of a user on a web or thick client business application. I will thus set up robots that play 24/7 scenarios previously agreed upon with the client. I must also replicate the real environment taking into account the SSO, the SaaS software versions, or the browser. The incidents and slowdowns that are reported in the MIP Solution are intended to give IT teams a clear picture of the actual experience of end users in their daily IT tasks, but also to identify errors before user feedback.
To achieve this goal and allow application and network teams to focus on incident resolution, we have chosen to take over the maintenance of the scripts. I make sure to adjust my developments as soon as there is a change on the interface of the tested application. For example, if the email or CRM has a menu change or a button change, I make the necessary changes. The alerts received are therefore not biased by a modification of the evaluated tool.
As for the analysis of the metrics, I go back daily on the last night’s incident reports to check their impact. With the screenshots and the functionality of video replay, it is easy for me to detect if a disturbance is critical or if it concerns only a slight adjustment of the script.
What are the main issues you need to address?
We must not forget that a user’s experience with an application, the availability of a tool, and its overall performance greatly influence the functioning of an organization. This is not limited to IT teams, but also to the business, which must be able to complete its missions without cluttered.
My main problems are to develop THE scenario with the same path as a human user, to remain on the lookout for new technologies in order to master all the client’s real-life environments, and ensure that the alerts raised are usable for a relevant analysis and corrections aimed at improvingperformances.
You were talking about “robot” earlier. Do you think that a script development can really simulate human behavior?
That’s where all my work lies! Taking into account the customer’s needs upstream of the development is decisive. I have to make sure to develop a scenario that is as close to the real thing as possible, with the steps of clicking, sending, delaying between these actions, exporting to other applications as well; and all this while reproducing the IT environment in which the end user evolves. The difference is that the robot performs the application scripts 24/7 outside office hours. The IT teams thus have performance and downtime alerts before the employee behind the screen realizes it. This is where we go from reactive to proactive mode!
In conclusion Maialen, what are the main skills to be an application script developer?
To be a good application script developer, you must be curious and autonomous to adapt to new technological tools. But also to have a taste for challenge to finalize a sometimes complex script, be reactive to manage incidents quickly, and especially… to be a force of proposal to constantly improve the code and its readability for a clean work.