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Many industries have complex workflows and user journeys that span multiple transactions and other event types such as logs and EUM data. These workflows typically take a long time to manifest and cannot be measured using transactions alone. Business Outcomes are a way to monitor and correlate the data flow across multiple event sources and track the total end-to-end time for defined business workflows. Typical multi-step workflows from different industries include:

  • Payment transfers, credit card approval, and loan approval in financial services industries
  • Cellphone Activation and data recharge (pre-paid) in the Telco sector
  • Insurance application through policy approval and insurance claims approval for insurance companies

Enabling Business Outcomes

SaaS environments: Business Outcomes is enabled by default.

On-premises installations: Business Outcomes is disabled by default. To enable Business Outcomes for on-premises installations:

  1. Edit the file.
  2. Change  ad.bizoutcome.enabled=false to true before starting the Events Service.

Business Outcomes Definition

Business Outcomes provides the capability to define the following:

  • Milestones (the steps in your business workflow) and the events comprising the milestones. A Business Outcome can include events from multiple analytics event types, such as logs, business transactions, and EUM data.
  • Fields to capture from each milestone event. 
  • The primary key field that uniquely ties the events together. The primary key value must be present in each milestone event.
  • Additional fields that allow you to segment on different dimensions of the business workflow, such as loan types or payment amounts.
  • Health thresholds for monitoring the Business Outcome performance.

Data Prerequisites for Defining Business Outcomes

Analytics creates Business Outcome composite events by collecting events and fields that you already capture as analytics data. As you define the milestones in the Business Outcome, you specify which events to use and which fields to extract from the events. You can extract fields collected by default or custom fields that you have configured for collection.

You need to know your starting and ending event and the clearly defined steps in between.

To collect additional fields in the events being captured by Application Analytics use one or more of the following techniques:

Business Outcomes Health Thresholds

A threshold is a boundary of acceptable or normal performance. Business Outcome authoring provides default health thresholds against which it compares the performance of the Business Outcome. The Business Outcome health thresholds are based on the total time to complete all the milestones in your Business Outcome and are calculated by determining the standard deviation from the simple moving average over an interval of time. The default time interval is two hours. This means that if the average end-to-end time for the last two hours is N milliseconds, and if the Business Outcome takes time equal to the standard deviation over N milliseconds (ms), it violates threshold.

For example, consider a simple moving average that is 1500 ms with a standard deviation of 100 ms. If you set the threshold to three, it means that the threshold is three times the standard deviation. In other words, a transaction that takes more than 1500 + (3*100) or 1800 ms violates the health threshold.

Note the following:

  • The minimum duration over which standard deviation is calculated is 30 minutes.
  • Total time for a Business Outcome to complete is not an addition of the separate business transaction times. It is calculated by subtracting the timestamp for the first event from the timestamp for the final event.
  • A user experience (normal, slow, very slow, stall) is assigned for the Business Outcome event when totalTime is present and greater than zero. Total time for the event could end up less than zero if the milestones are defined in an incorrect order or when milestones are not in time order such that an early milestone has a future date compared to a later milestone, even when the order is correctly defined.
  • Because the total time for the Business Outcome is calculated when both the first and last milestones events have been reached, the user experience can not be determined and displayed until total time for the Business Outcome is available. 
  • When a milestone encounters an error (for example a transaction event where the requestExperience is Error), the user experience for the entire Business Outcome event is marked as an Error and in this case the total time will be missing.
  • Typically when a milestone has an error, the entire Business Outcome does not complete. However, if for some reason, all the milestones complete even when milestone errors exist, then total time is available. However, in this case, we will retain overall user experience as error and not change to Normal/Slow etc.
  • After a Business Outcome is initially enabled, Business Outcome events are generated. The standard deviation is calculated every five minutes, so the first few Business Outcome events will not have a user experience assigned to them.

Watch the Video

For full-screen viewing, click Business Journeys, also known as Business Outcomes.


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