SilverStripe

Reducing error notifications by tens of thousands with Raygun

In the world of digital transformation, where every company is a software company, the moviegoing experience now begins online. The small cinema sector is no exception, and the pressure is on for boutique cinemas to keep up with large multiplexes and meet online expectations.

“It’s not just about when you turn up to the cinema anymore. It’s about the entire booking process,” says Sean Jackson, Software Development Manager at Veezi. “Buying your ticket online needs to be as easy and simple as possible.”

To help independent cinemas provide the unique and frictionless experience that moviegoers crave, Veezi’s development team needs to deliver updates and features that are error-free.

“It’s incredibly important for Veezi to deliver a reliable experience.” Sean says.

Sean Jackson, Software Development Manager at Veezi
Vista Cinema software runs in 40% of the world's cinemas in 100-plus countries worldwide. If our customers aren't getting a reliable experience from us, that means their customers aren't getting a reliable experience from them.
Sean Jackson - Software Development Manager

As a manager, it’s Sean’s job to maintain development velocity by optimizing the time developers spend writing code. As part of that task, Sean is always looking for inefficiencies in processes and tooling. During a routine evaluation, he noticed that managing errors was consuming too much of his team’s time. Sean recognized that instead of testing every configuration and looking through error logs to diagnose errors, an error monitoring solution would alert them to errors and their cause.

Sean says that when they implemented Raygun Crash Reporting, he was able to introduce more efficient error management workflows. The results were excellent—his team saved hours every week—enabling them to optimize time spent writing features and delivering quality code to customers.

Collection of images showing Veezi by Vista using Raygun Crash Reporting to increase reliability

The confidence to deploy, even during times of increased load

Modern multiplexes have set the bar high for independent cinema. Moviegoers want a boutique experience, but still expect state-of-the-art screens, luxury seating, and flawless booking experiences.

Monitoring thousands of applications for software problems is challenging, but Veezi has built robust workflows that ensure—even with increased load from blockbuster movie releases—there is no downtime for their customers.

Sean explains: “For movie releases like the Avengers or a new Star Wars movie, we'll see up to 20 times our usual load coming through our ticketing systems.”

Even during these high-load windows, Raygun Crash Reporting gives the team confidence to deploy changes and bug fixes faster. “When we deploy a feature into our test system, being able to find any errors before we push it up to production and before our customers notice is absolutely critical. Raygun is absolutely an integral part of our workflow to enable deployment of better software faster.”

With Raygun’s Dashboard, Sean’s team can investigate and resolve errors before customers notice, allowing them to deliver their product more reliably and more quickly.

I think now we have one of the best workflows you would find anywhere. We're able to power through writing new features more of the time and that means better outcomes for our customers and their customers.

A best-practice workflow enables Veezi to innovate and scale up faster

A best-practice workflow enables Veezi to innovate and scale up faster

Online ticket sales for cinemas are increasing every year, and we know that moviegoers that purchase online are more likely to attend in groups, buy concession items and upgrade to premium seating. Therefore, more independent cinemas are turning to Veezi to help increase their online reputation and their bottom line.

As Veezi’s team grows and scales up to meet that demand, Sean wants to ensure the development team is always delivering new value and maintaining an error-free product.

"It's important for us to be able to have a lot of confidence in our own product. Because everyone here is really passionate about the movies, we are essentially customers of our customers. That motivates us to innovate faster and deliver our product as soon as achievable as well.”

Linbis uses Raygun Crash Reporting and Slack for proactive error monitoring

To create an effective method of detecting errors in production, Eric looked to Raygun Crash Reporting. One of the first steps Eric’s team took was to set up production alerts so that the development team is made aware of any issues in real-time.

“Raygun’s had a positive impact on our team; that ties back to the developer’s ability to spend most of their time writing features with confidence and reducing the lead time of feature delivery."

“Everyone is proud to be part of this unique business where we are supporting the independent cinema industry with a mission-critical product and in doing so, increasing both the standard of their moviegoer experience and the economic success of their cinemas.”

About Veezi and Vista Cinema

Veezi, engineered by Vista, is the leading independent cinema management software solution in the world. Running in the cloud, in more cinemas, in more countries than any other provider, you couldn't have better credentials to develop Veezi. A bunch of movie zealots working alongside Vista Cinema across 100+ countries (and counting), they understand the moviegoing experience and constantly strive to enhance it for all.

Visit www.veezi.com and follow Veezi on Facebook and Vista Cinema on LinkedIn and Twitter

Companies who work with SilverStripe—whether with their strategy and design services or building a website—soon experience their dedication for delivering outstanding digital experiences.  

Speaking at StripeCon, SilverStripe’s own conference, Sam Minnée, the CEO and Co-Founder of SilverStripe says, “Some of the bigger companies we work with frequently report a sense of being stuck—whether that's with legacy technologies, old processes, or an entrenched culture. They just don’t know how to get stuff done. We see companies make decisions, then 12 months down the line be strained by the tactical choice they made. Some companies can take three years to implement a solution, which then becomes obsolete.”

With their range of services, SilverStripe wants to see these problems eradicated by managing the Digital Transformation process end-to-end, from strategy and design, through development, to ongoing support.

Many companies are aiding the Digital Transformation process. How is SilverStripe different? Sam says the answer is simple, “SilverStripe helps you start fast and stay fast.”

Identifying the need for visibility into software errors

When SilverStripe work with clients, they make sure to improve the everyday lives of the people using their websites and web apps—which means providing error-free user experiences.

Headshot of Sam Minee, CEO and Co-Founder of SilverStripe
We run high-value websites and applications for a number of clients where reliability is really key.
Sam Minnée - CEO and Co-Founder of SilverStripe

To do that, SilverStripe recognized the need to make errors more visible to the development and operations teams. However, their error logging solution was overwhelming the team with tens of thousands of email notifications.

When the team implemented Raygun, they were soon able to eliminate noise from notifications using Raygun’s error grouping feature and the weekly error digest emails so they could quickly take action on the errors that made an impact to their customers.  

Sam explains that before Raygun, the development team would receive an email every time an error occurred. “This would lead to thousands or even tens of thousands of emails that you just didn’t have time to make any sense of.” Sam continues, “Raygun transformed this and made our process much more usable and much more informative.”

Because Raygun automatically groups error types, which can then be ignored or permanently ignored, Sam’s team can prioritize quickly and effectively, not get lost in error logs.  

“Sometimes data can be overwhelming, so that’s why Raygun’s ability to concentrate the data and to draw the most relevant insights is really useful.”

Collection of images showing SilverStripe using Raygun Crash Reporting

Insight into errors during development

Explaining more about how Raygun improves visibility into errors, Sam says, “As standard practice, we roll out Raygun to all our sites. We do it both in production and in our testing environments so that we can pick up on errors during development. Both our delivery operations teams have access to the Raygun data.”

Integrations are also essential to drive visibility into software errors. Slack has been particularly pivotal in enabling the team to concentrate on the most relevant error data. SilverStripe also has its own cloud platform which integrates with Raygun to give more information about the health of new deployments.

Looking to the future

SilverStripe believes everyone's lives should improve as technology advances. SilverStripe’s mission is to help everyone have valued interactions with the organizations that shape modern life.

To do that, SilverStripe develops relationships built on trust with long-term clients by continuing to exceed expectations with excellent digital experiences.

Our customers trust us to deliver high-quality, reliable websites and applications. Raygun helps us know that we’re doing that well.

“For someone who’s considering Raygun, I would ask ‘what is your approach for keeping track of the errors that occur on your websites, and how do you know what’s really happening in production?’ Raygun is a great tool for this, and you should consider it.”

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