Cox Automotive solutions focus on enabling efficient and faster vehicle transactions by bridging the gap between manufacturers, dealers, and consumers. The company has a global client base with over 40,000 dealers. The Cox Automotive engineering team works with dealers that use different applications and different technology stacks to manage inventory and sales processes. Cox Automotive turned to Catchpoint for the following:
- Centralized observability solution to handle all critical monitoring tasks.
- Proactively identify and troubleshooting issues.
- Service level agreement compliance.
Their support has been fantastic - really taking the time to show us new features as they come out - and they are coming out with new features very frequently.
The following is based on an interview with Charles Conley, IT Ops manager at Cox Automotive. It has been edited for clarity.
Cox Automotive is a collection of companies that help people purchase cars. We own Kelly blue book. We own Autotrader. We own Dealer, and we help dealerships own and manage their inventories. Our organization grew through a lot of acquisitions, and many of these acquisitions had different operating models, different support teams, different support models, and different technical stacks. As we bring things together under the Cox Automotive umbrella, it's very important that all of our customers have a good, consistent experience. It’s not just the dollar value, it's our reputation. Because that's the one thing we are an umbrella overall - parts of our organization are like - we're Cox Automotive, you know, we're going to deliver good service and that's important to us.
My team helps with that. It is a collection of engineers that work with a lot of the application developers to make sure that health and monitoring checks are in place for their applications, and that those applications are bringing in all the KPIs (or centralizing the information on those services).
Catchpoint did something unique. It balances with some of our other services. One of the features in Catchpoint that I like quite a bit is the smart dashboards that they have. Bringing all the information together and comparing it to a previous time is really helpful because then you can see what normal behavior is and then what you're currently experiencing, and that can be very helpful to troubleshoot an issue.
Monitoring is critical to the reputation of your company because it helps you figure out whether or not you're providing the services you think you're providing, and when you're not meeting that customer expectation. If you have good monitoring in place, you're going to be able to fix it before they report it. It ultimately reduces your meantime (you know, MTTR). It's detecting the issue quickly, and then bringing in the resources to repair that issue.
Our company has certain service level agreements (SLAs) with our customers and there can be financial penalties if our sites are not available as much as we promise them or commit to. And the best way to meet those goals is by identifying issues quickly. We've had major incidents, you know, things do break in IT. I think everybody knows it. And being able to detect them, repair them, and get them back up and running quickly, is critical to our success.
I think when you're looking for a solution like Catchpoint, you’ve got to look at the strengths that they have, which includes the number of testing locations. The ability to cycle through the testing locations is very rare, and so helpful to do. You know it allows you to run a test and get an idea of how it's performing all over the country without significantly driving up the testing costs.
Their support has been fantastic - really taking the time to show us new features as they come out - and they are coming out with new features very frequently. Definitely put them on your shortlist.