As any engineer will tell you, application monitoring is paramount to ensuring that your system is running well and working for users. You’re able to make sure users are getting a performant software experience, and that any recurring errors are dealt with quickly.
So when I saw a job opportunity at Pendo and learned what the product was about (no-code product analytics and in-app communication) my thoughts were, This is amazing! Product managers need their own monitoring tool. I also learned that it meant engineers would no longer be asked to add in bespoke logging into system logs to track product usage—which is a huge win for engineering organizations.
What I have come to realize during my time at Pendo is that Pendo is not just a tool for the product team. It’s a tool for everyone—including engineers.
The power of Pendo for engineers
You won’t be surprised to learn that we use Pendo on Pendo. We recently released our Roadmaps tool, and I’ve become obsessed with how our customers are using it. After all, the engineering team spent many hours designing, building, and testing this product. And we want to know how (or if) our customers are utilizing it.
Like many businesses, our R&D function operates in cross functional teams where everyone has a voice. Engineers have just as much input into what and how we build a new feature as the product owner and designer. So by viewing analytics and reading the direct feedback we receive, we can see if we made the right choices during development. We as engineers get to peek into a world that previously only the product team had access to.
In my opinion, this can only make you a better engineer. We build software for people and hope that in some way it will make their lives better—so we need to understand how they are using it.
As an engineer myself, here are my top reasons your engineering team should be using Pendo, too.
1. Engineers see product data with fresh perspective
We all know that different viewpoints are important in building the best application for your users. Engineers certainly have a unique perspective of your product. Providing your engineers with a direct view into product usage data opens the door to new questions, suggestions, and optimizations the rest of your team may miss. With Pendo, your engineers are able to join the conversation during the problem identification space—better enabling them to contribute to the solution.
2. Engineers want to know they’re building the right things, at the right time
There is a strategy in Lean software development of leaving a decision until the Last Responsible Moment. Pendo enables you to defer decisions while also collecting data that will assist you in making the right decision. You might think something is important to your customer, but that it could be extremely complex to build. By presenting the simple solution first and using Pendo to monitor user behavior, you will soon discover if that complex solution is really valuable to the customer and worth investing in.
While you’re tracking this data you can also be building something you know customers need. In the end, you will have data to support your decision—maybe that “something” is a must-have, or maybe it can be moved to the list of “fun things I could have built that no one would have used.”
3. Engineers (and your whole team) should be making decisions based on data
If all team members have a view of your usage data, then discussions become a lot lot simpler, and nothing comes down to an individual’s opinion. Although possible, it’s hard to argue with the data. Sometimes the data just screams at you and the market is telling you in a singular voice “we need this feature.” Sometimes, though, you may need to collect a little bit more—but it’s all there within Pendo.
4. Engineers want cleaner logging with less bespoke tracking requests
With Pendo, product teams can track user events without involving the engineering team, freeing them up to focus on what’s important (building features that delight your customers). If custom track events are required, the data is stored in Pendo (and not your system’s logs), and it’s easy to build this into your development life cycle.
Having access to usage data and direct customer feedback provides me with insight I never had before—and motivates me to do better for the people who use our product. If you’re a Pendo user, I encourage you to invite your engineering team into Pendo today.