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Why New Relic

Risk-free assessment, easy implementation, out-of-the-box value

Highlights
  • Gained visibility into application performance without building a Network Operations Center (NOC) or developing in-house tools
  • Enabled smarter capacity planning by providing information necessary for accurate scaling of resources
  • Documented compliance with performance-based SLAs, improving transparency and strengthening reputation as a trusted vendor

Nulogy Cuts Average Response Time in Half with Help from New Relic

Founded in 2002, Nulogy solves problems across the supply chain for more than 400 brands worldwide. By connecting partners and managing operations in truly innovative ways, the company’s cloud-based solutions optimize the production and delivery of a wide array of consumer packaged goods.

Environment

From front end to back end, Nulogy’s environment includes a number of high-performance Rails applications. All of these apps are hosted on a distributed Engine Yard platform that combines the Verizon Terremark private cloud with the Amazon public cloud.

Maintaining real-time zccess to supply chain data

At Nulogy, real-time application performance is fundamental to the company’s success. “Most of our traffic revolves around business workflow, so the transactions tend to be read-heavy and write-heavy,” says James Ho, Development Support Lead at Nulogy. “We need to proactively monitor both the reads and the writes to keep our performance up to par.”

At first, the Nulogy team tried developing homegrown tools for monitoring performance, but that proved impractical. “We tried monitoring logs directly,” says Jason Yuen, Nulogy co-founder and CTO. “We even developed a few in-house workarounds, but we still didn’t have the comprehensive visibility we needed. That’s when we began looking at the options available on the market.”

“From an app server perspective, New Relic has been instrumental in cutting our average response time in half, even as our request volume has more than tripled.”

James Ho Development Support Lead, Nulogy

Risk-free assessment yields instant value

Nulogy found the right solution with help from a trusted New Relic partner. “Engine Yard offered a free Standard account as part of its cloud application management platform,” says Yuen. “We figured we had nothing to lose, so we gave it a try. New Relic was exactly what we needed. It was like building a virtualized Network Operations Center (NOC) overnight.”

Implementation was easy. The Nulogy team simply deployed the New Relic agent with minimal configuration as part of a bundled install from Engine Yard. “With the online documentation and community support, it was a no-brainer,” says Ho. “We saw immense value from day one.”

Today, New Relic offers a holistic view of Nulogy’s application environment, enabling developers to make informed business decisions for optimizing system performance. “In DevOps, our primary focus is to keep our apps running smoothly,” says Ho. “Data is the key to making that happen.

"If our apps are slowing down or crashing, New Relic alerts us and gives us the information we need to find the source of the problem.” The custom dashboard plays a critical role in keeping Nulogy team members on the same page. A single interface provides a comprehensive overview of the company’s master and slave databases, visualizing a wide range of metrics from I/O utilization to application response time.

Meanwhile, the New Relic Browser enables the Nulogy team to understand performance issues from the perspective of users, and the Apdex feature sets appropriate thresholds for triggering alerts. New Relic alerts are seamlessly integrated with PagerDuty to help ensure fast remediation of emerging issues.

The Key Transactions feature is perhaps most valuable of all. Nulogy uses it to proactively fine-tune slow-running transactions, tracking performance over time to confirm that any change has resulted in meaningful improvement. “With Key Transactions, we can pinpoint our worst problem areas, then focus on whatever requires immediate attention,” says Yuen. “That helps us maintain the kind of real-time performance our users expect.”

“We offer the scalability and reliability that SaaS customers like Nulogy need to deliver the best user experience to their customers. We ensure maximum uptime for Nulogy by providing 24x7 hands-on support. Both our support engineers and Nulogy rely on New Relic app monitoring to fine tune performance and optimize resources.” — Dan Vu, Manager of Customer Success at Engine Yard

“We work with hundreds of global brands. Many of our clients demand business-grade SLAs to guarantee real-time access to data. With New Relic, we can monitor the availability of our applications and share that information with clients during service reviews, and that level of transparency strengthens our reputation as a trusted vendor.”

Jason Yuen Co-Founder and CTO, Nulogy

Achieving greater transparency with superior data

By deploying New Relic, the Nulogy team is able to gain visibility across its environment without building a NOC or developing in-house tools. “If we were to build our own monitoring solution, we wouldn’t have anything as sophisticated as New Relic,” says Yuen. “It would probably be focused on downtime monitoring, slow query monitoring, and response time. Even so, we’d be looking at two to three months of work for a couple of developers, so the development time alone would be around $50,000.”

New Relic provides the data necessary to make significant improvements in response time. “Some of our slower transactions have actually become 10 times faster, because we’ve been able to implement a more efficient query or rewrite code to use less memory,” says Ho. “From an app server perspective, New Relic has been instrumental in cutting our average response time in half, even as our request volume has more than tripled.”

With that level of visibility, capacity planning is easier than ever. “We use New Relic to optimize our Engine Yard environment,” says Ho. “If one server is overloaded, we can add another. We can analyze database performance over time and adjust accordingly. New Relic gives us the information we need to scale up our resources as efficiently as possible.”

New Relic data is instrumental in documenting Nulogy’s compliance with performance-based SLAs. “We work with hundreds of global brands,” says Yuen. “Many of our clients demand business-grade SLAs to guarantee real-time access to data. With New Relic, we can monitor the availability of our applications and share that information with clients during service reviews, and that level of transparency strengthens our reputation as a trusted vendor.”

“We’ve relied on New Relic since day one,” adds Yuen. “This technology is our eyes and ears. If I try to imagine life without it, all I can say is that we’d be in a very bad place.”

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