Case Study

Visibility into Application Performance Helps Airline Assure Passengers Keep Flying

Visibility into Application Performance Helps Airline Assure Passengers Keep Flying


The Challenge
  • Strategic initiative to upgrade service assurance visibility
  • Reservation outage was not caught by existing tool
The Solution
  • nGeniusONE® Service Assurance platform, InfiniStreamNG™ appliances and vSTREAMs
  • nGenius® for Flows & Collectors
  • nGeniusPULSE and nPoints
The Results
  • Global visibility via a single pane of glass into network and application performance for passenger-impacting services
  • Cost-effective, scalable support for voice, video, and data applications from multiple data sources across distributed environment

Customer Profile

This large, North American airline carrier is one of the top 25 largest in the world, serving an average of more than 4 million customers monthly. For scheduled or charter flights, passengers or cargo, this air carrier’s thousands of employees and more than 250 planes ensure the safe and comfortable arrival at hundreds of airports on six of the seven continents. They rely heavily upon a global network designed to support ticket counters in global airports, regional data centers and call centers, and airport suites and lounges. Digital transformation has been key to their success, with the use of websites, portals, and mobile apps to meet the growing, modern needs of its passenger family. The IT organization makes its goal of ensuring flawless experience with these services and their travel a top priority.

The Challenge

The IT organization invited their global and regional technology partners to a strategic planning meeting following changes in the department’s executive leadership. Upon revealing their top business transformation initiatives and requirements, one of the technology partners introduced NETSCOUT® as part of the solution to satisfy the strategic directive around improving network and application management. This had become a key initiative due to a few critical factors. First, their existing management platform was made “end of life” by the vendor and no longer supported the modern technology and service needs of the airline organization. Second, the IT executives wanted to reduce the complexity and costs associated with hobbling together complete coverage using multiple non-integrated tools from several disparate vendors. It had become too operationally inefficient and financially expensive to continue with this approach. They wanted a seamless solution that would provide service assurance support for their customer-impacting applications and across their distributed global environment.

Solution in Action

Once the airline’s IT team determined that one of the strategic initiatives would focus on enhancing service assurance, the airline’s IT partners presented alternatives. During the proposals and evaluations period, the airline suffered a costly network outage directly impacting the call centers and reservation / ticketing system, which in turn refined the most important considerations for the new network and application performance management solution. Following a rigorous review, the airline selected NETSCOUT.

A key capability consideration in selecting NETSCOUT was broad visibility to eliminate their blind spots with a single pane-of-glass view into the performance across their global IT environment. This required the same level of visibility and analysis in their data center and remote locations, as well as in the public cloud. With the nGeniusONE Service Assurance platform and InfiniStreamNG (ISNG) software appliances in their main data center and vSTREAM™ in their virtualized environments and the cloud, they are monitoring wire traffic throughout the hybrid environment. Additionally, with nGenius for Flows, the airline has gained visibility into activity across airport locations. Leveraging Adaptive Service Intelligence™ (ASI) technology for smart data from ISNG, vSTREAM, and nGenius Collectors, nGeniusONE provides a fully integrated, seamless analysis and rollup of the different data sources in the same intuitive user interface. Using logical workflows from dashboards, to service dependency maps, to session analysis, the airline is isolating impacted locations and pinpointing the source of errors and degradations. Infrastructure health was also critical to the team, and nGeniusPULSE is providing the contextual drilldown from nGeniusONE to nGeniusPULSE when necessary, such as when they recently had to isolate a problem to a device CPU on a database server that was causing an application slowdown.

The Results

The importance of an efficiently operating network and application environment cannot be overstated for this airline. When one hour of downtime represents a multi-million-dollar exposure to their business, they were highly motivated to gain visibility through the nGeniusONE solution to achieve their strategic goal of gaining service assurance for their reservation, ticketing, frequent flyer, and baggage tracking applications, among other passenger impacting services.

The breadth of visibility and analysis across their global environment, for their main data centers, regional data centers, call centers, and airport locations for voice, video and data services, is improving awareness of emerging issues and dramatically reducing the time to pinpoint the source, often helping to avoid impacting their valued passenger community. Furthermore, the nGeniusONE solution is supporting the airline’s needs today and will grow with them as they transform their worldwide network and applications going forward. An added benefit is that they will realize lower overall operating expenses with fewer vendors to manage, now that their network and application performance visibility is provided by NETSCOUT.