Key Task: Enhance Your Planning by Analyzing Costs (Analyze Costly Activities)

With the Analyze Costly Activities dashboard, you can plan future decisions by viewing the cost impact of different attributes.

Tip

Before using this dashboard, try the Commonalities Analysis dashboard to troubleshoot a single activity to find a single common thread to define the problem. However, if your problem is more complex, perhaps involving more than one activity and viewing several common threads which intersect, use the Analyze dashboards to test your theory.

The Analyze Costly Activities dashboard

For example, you could view the productivity loss while waiting for just several specific activities across several applications.

To calculate the cost of an activity, you must enter the average hourly cost of an employee. The system already knows the number of end users performing each activity, and the time they spent waiting for the application to respond. So the total cost of an activity is the average response time of an activity (converted from seconds to hours) multiplied by the number of times this activity was performed, multiplied by the cost per hour.

Calculate cost of an activity to your organization

Procedure

  1. Step 1 Open a browser and log in to Aternity.
  2. Step 2 Select Main Menu > Analyze > Costly Activities.
    Accessing Analyze Costly Activities dashboard
  3. Step 3 Select the two criteria (Breakdowns) which you want to correlate using the panel on the right hand side, to display them as the two leftmost columns of the dashboard.

    You can narrow the data further by choosing an attribute and its value in the Filters section in the right hand panel, to view only the data when the attribute had that value. For example, you can filter for small mobile devices only by selecting Filters > Device Type > Smartphones.

    Note

    When you choose a Breakdown, the dashboard displays graphs with all the values of that attribute. When you choose a Filter (a menu with similar items to the breakdown), you must also choose a value, to display only the data where this filter item has that value.

    Choose the two criteria (Breakdowns) to check the costs and narrow further with filters

    Select any of the following fields to appear as a criterion in the leftmost columns (Breakdown fields), or narrow the data further (Filters section). When you select an attribute as a filter, select one or more values to display only data where the attribute has one of the specified values.

    Tip

    The system only offers to narrow data with filter values which are available. The system does not offer values which have not been reported to the system. For example, if you select Week Number as your filter, it will only display the weeks for which monitoring data is available.

    Field Description
    Activities (breakdown only)

    Displays the name of the monitored activity within the application.

    Application Versions

    Displays the version of the managed application defined in Aternity.

    Applications (breakdown only)

    Displays the names of the managed applications defined in Aternity.

    Business Locations

    Displays the name of the current location of the device. This is different from the Office, which is fixed for each user.

    For example, if a user based in the Houston office is working from the Chicago office, the Office is Houston, while the Business Location is Chicago.

    Carriers

    (Mobile devices only) Displays the name of the cellular carrier to which the device is connected.

    Cities

    Displays the city of the current location of the device.

    Client Device Name

    (Virtual deployments only) Displays the hostname of a device which is connecting to a VDI or virtual application server.

    Client Device Type

    (Virtual deployments only) Displays the type of front line terminal which runs the virtual session hosted on a virtual server.

    If the front line terminal has an Aternity Agent locally installed, it reports the type of device of the terminal. Otherwise, if it does not have its own Agent, it reports it as a Remote Device.

    Countries

    Displays the country of the current location of the device.

    # CPU Cores

    Displays the number of CPU processors of the device.

    CPU Frequency

    Displays the speed of the CPU processors of the device.

    Data Center Locations

    Data Center Locations in Aternity lists the locations of any virtual application servers (like Citrix XenApp) and VDI hypervisors (like in VMWare vSphere) which run the application. If the application is deployed both locally and virtually, one of the locations displays as Local.

    Days from Last Boot (breakdown only)

    Displays the number of days since the last time the device was booted. If you think that people experience slowdowns because they have not booted in some time, you can compare their performance with users who restart their devices frequently.

    Day of Week (filters only)

    Select to filter the displayed data for one or more days in the week.

    Department

    Displays the name of the department to which the user or the device belongs.

    (Windows) The Agent queries Windows network login information, accessing the Active Directory user > Properties > Department.

    (Mobile) Mobile apps can set this manually in the Aternity Mobile SDK.

    Departments

    Displays the list of departments in your organization.

    Device Names

    Displays the hostname of the monitored device.

    For mobile devices, it displays the Device Name field. With Aternity Mobile SDK, you can customize the name of personal mobile devices running your enterprise app, so it displays in the dashboards according to your corporate naming policy. For example, you can dynamically assign the device name according to the app's enterprise login.

    Device Types

    Displays the type of device accessed by this login.

    • Desktops are monitored Windows devices without a battery fitted.

    • Laptops are Windows devices with a battery and a built-in keyboard (including all Windows hybrid tablet/laptop models)

    • Remote Devices have applications accessed remotely via an RDP protocol, for example, with Microsoft's Remote Desktop Connection.

    • Smartphones run monitored mobile apps on a small touch screen within a mobile operating system environment.

    • Tablets have larger touch screens, and no built-in keyboard, running iOS or Android. If it runs Windows, it is defined as a tablet if it is a known model of a Windows pure tablet (like Microsoft Surface models).

    • Virtual App Servers offer multiple users access to a single setup of an application, for example, with Citrix XenApp.

    • Virtual Desktops offer the ability to run an application within a VDI environment, which is a virtual instance of the entire desktop operating system (usually Windows).

    Emails

    (For all devices except mobile) Displays the email address associated with the current logged in user.

    Hours of Day (filters only)

    Select to limit the displayed data of the dashboard by specific hourly slots in the day.

    Hypervisors

    (VDI deployments only) Displays the hypervisor name if your application is running in a virtual desktop environment, like VMWare vSphere. You can check if the drop in performance in some virtual machines (VMs) is concentrated around a specific hypervisor.

    Manufacturers

    Displays the name of the device manufacturer. For example, Dell, Lenovo, Samsung, Apple, and so on.

    Memory Size

    Displays the size of RAM of the device in gigabytes (GB).

    Models

    Displays the name of the model of the device. For example, iPhone6.1, Dell Latitude D620, GalaxyTab8.

    Network Speed

    Displays the maximum enabled speed of the active network adapter on a particular network (in megabits per second or Mbps). For example, the speed of WiFi at home on a device, or the speed of the network port at the office.

    Network Types

    Displays the type of network connection of the device: LAN or WiFi, or for mobile devices it can be Mobile or WiFi.

    Offices

    (For all devices except mobile) Displays the office where the current user logged in to this device.

    For example, if a user based in the Houston office is currently visiting the Chicago office, the Office is Houston, while the Location would be Chicago.

    On Site

    Displays true when the device can identify and connect to the Microsoft Active Directory site (either directly or via VPN).

    On VPN

    (For all devices except mobile) Displays true when the device is connected to the corporate network through VPN.

    The Agent queries Windows for a known virtual network adapter which is currently active.

    Operating Systems

    Displays the full name and exact version number of the operating system (OS), but does not include the service pack number, so you can check if an issue appears only on certain operating systems. Use this to differentiate between different variants of an OS, like 32 vs. 64 bit.

    For example, it lists Microsoft Windows 8.1 64 bit Enterprise separately from Microsoft Windows 8.1 32 bit Enterprise, or Android 4.1.4 separately from Android 4.2.1.

    To view this information and the service pack version, see Service Packs.

    OS Architectures

    Displays whether the operating system of the monitored device is 32 bit or 64 bit.

    OS Disk Types

    Displays the type of hard disk where the operating system is installed. Possible values are:

    • HDD for a traditional spinning hard disk drive

    • SSD for a solid state drive

    • Virtual if this is not a physical device.

    OS Types

    Displays the full name and broad category of the operating system. Use this to differentiate between different major operating system groups. For example, it displays all variants and releases of Microsoft Windows 7 under a single category of Microsoft Windows 7. All Android devices are listed the single label of Android.

    Page Titles

    (Web applications only) Displays the reported title of the web page which an end user loads. The Agent only sends this information if the page is part of a managed web application (WPM).

    Regions

    You can optionally define a region in Aternity to group together several locations under a single label, like the geographical region of EMEA, North America or even Southern Europe, South-Western US any other grouping you choose.

    Roles

    Displays the job title of the current user logged in to this device.

    Server Hostnames

    Displays the hostname of the server, when an application on the device contacts a server. For example, on a device using SAP, it displays the hostname of the SAP server. This is a clearer definition to replace Target Server.

    Server IPs

    Displays the IP address of the server, when an application on the device contacts a server. For example, on a device using Outlook, it displays the IP address of the Exchange server. This is a clearer definition to replace Target Server.

    Server Names

    Displays the DNS name of the server, when an application on the device contacts a server. For example, on a device using SharePoint, it displays the DNS name of the SharePoint server. This is a clearer definition to replace Target Server.

    Service Packs

    Displays the full name, the exact version number, and the service pack version of the operating system. Use this to differentiate between different service packs of the same operating system version. For example, it lists Microsoft Windows 7 Ultimate SP0.0 separately from Microsoft Windows 7 Ultimate SP1.0.

    To view this information with its service pack version, see Service Packs.

    States

    Displays the geographical State for the business location of the device.

    Status (breakdown only)

    Displays the status of an activity. The status of an activity is based on one response time compared to the recent expected (baselined) response time.

    Subnets

    Displays the subnet configuration of the device which is used to connect to Aternity.

    Target Servers

    Displays the name or IP address of the server which the device contacted as part of performing the activity. For example, if the activity is in SAP, this field would display the FQDN of the SAP server.

    This is used for backward compatibility, but is now more clearly defined In the Server Hostname, Server IP and Server Name fields.

    User Domains

    Displays the LDAP domain name for the user who is logged in to the device.

    User Full Names

    Displays the full name of the user as defined in the corporate LDAP.

    Usernames

    Displays the username logged in to a device.

    Week Number (filters only)

    Select this to display only data related to a particular week number in the year.

  4. Step 4 Enter the average cost per hour for the company as people wait for an application to respond in $ per Hour at the top of the screen.
    Set the rates underlying the cost results in the top corner
    Tip

    To calculate the total costs more accurately, if the average costs vary significantly across your organization, you can select a single department or location (in the Filters section) and enter its average cost.

    Field Description
    $ per Hour

    Enter the average cost of employees per hour. The system uses this rate to convert the total response times to financial cost.

    Ignore Less

    Enter the minimum cost of an activity to be displayed in this dashboard. Any activity whose Lost Productivity (horizontal bar) amounts to less than this value is not displayed in the dashboard.

  5. Step 5 View the performance of each combination of breakdowns at the center of your troubleshooting hypothesis, to find any changes in performance.
    View the costs associated with the attributes chosen in the Breakdowns section
    Field Description
    First / Second Breakdowns

    Displays the values of the two criteria which you chose in the Breakdowns section in the right hand pane, so you can compare between them to find a correlation with end user performance.

    Activity Response

    Displays the performance as activity response times for each of the values you chose to display. The response times of activities are split into client time ( dark blue), and the combination or union of the server time ( light blue) and the network time ( blue).

    Use the actual response times (not scores) to check the performance of chronic (long term) problems. You cannot rely on measurements based on the recent baselines, as those responses would be chronically slow for some time, thereby skewing baselines to make those times look normal.

    Volume

    (Managed applications only) Displays the number of activities performed by people with this combination of attributes, hence adding weight to the impact of this problem. If the same user performs the same activity twice, it counts as two.

    Lost Hours

    The Response (converted to hours) for an activity multiplied by the Volume for that activity.

    Lost Productivity

    The total cost of this activity to the company, displayed as a horizontal bar. It is calculated as the Lost Hours multiplied by the $ per hour field at the top of the screen.

  6. Step 6 You can change the timeframe of this dashboard in the Timeframe menu in the top right corner of the dashboard.

    Choose the start time of the data displayed in this dashboard.

    You can access data in this dashboard (retention) going back up to 14 days. This dashboard's data refreshes every hour.