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The Six Five On the Road at AWS reInvent 2023 with LogicMonitor CEO Christina Kosmowski and CPO Taggart Matthiesen

The Six Five On the Road at AWS reInvent 2023 with LogicMonitor CEO Christina Kosmowski and CPO Taggart Matthiesen

On this episode of The Six Five – On The Road, hosts Daniel Newman and Patrick Moorhead welcome LogicMonitor CEO Christina Kosmowski and CPO Taggart Matthiesen for a conversation on how their vision for the company and its product strategy has evolved to meet the critical needs of today’s ITOps and CloudOps audiences.

Their discussion covers:

  • A look at the biggest challenges facing today’s IT and Cloud leaders
  • How the vision for the company has evolved over the years to address these challenges
  • How LogicMonitor’s product vision and strategy meet the needs of today’s ITOps and CloudOps audiences

Learn more about LogicMonitor, on the company’s website.

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Transcript:

Patrick Moorhead: The Six Five is On the Road at AWS re:Invent 2023. We are here in Las Vegas. I’m joined by my incredible, handsome, intelligent co-host, Daniel Newman.
Dan, we’re having some amazing conversations here, right?

Daniel Newman: Yeah. It’s really great to be here in the studio, in the Six Five lounge, I like to call it.

Patrick Moorhead: Thank you. I know. I totally…

Daniel Newman: Here at…

Patrick Moorhead: … dust that at re:Invent.

Daniel Newman: … AWS re:Invent. And you know what, Pat? It’s been a really high-energy week. You know, it’s only the middle of the week, but I really love this event. Why do I love it? I love the energy, the enthusiasm. This is an enterprise show. Of course, there’s always enterprise apps that go to the consumers. But we are in the era of AI. We are in an era of data. We are in an era of accelerated computing, and we are seeing, now, so much growth and these tech people, you just got to love everything about them.

Patrick Moorhead: Yeah, you got to love it. I talk about the maturing of the cloud, where five or six years ago, it was almost like, every vendor wanted everything. And then, they really grew up. The cloud is 14 years old. It’s still a teenager, but it is growing up. And people recognize that they need partners, especially partners who can manage the data. We’ll call it observability for the data, regardless of where it is, whether it’s on prem, whether it’s on the edge, whether it’s in multiple clouds, the important of observability, because of the fractalization of the infrastructure and the applications as increasing big time. And that is why it is my distinct pleasure to introduce executives from LogicMonitor. Welcome to the six five.

Taggart Matthiesen: Thank you.

Christina Kosmowski: Thank you. We’re excited to be here, and also, feeling the energy here at re:Invent.

Daniel Newman: Well, Christina and Taggart, I want to, first of all… LogicMonitor is on a really great growth clip, and Pat and I have been paying a lot of attention to observability. Of course, you have the evolution of ITOps, AIOps, IT service management, and you guys are right at the epicenter of that. I don’t think we’ve had you on The Six Five before. So, as a starting point, and Christina, I’ll let you do this, I’ll give you the honors, but give us the kind of quick, how do you launch into a conversation where you’re like, “Hey, I work. I lead LogicMonitor. We do…” Tell me that story.

Christina Kosmowski: Well, we are the hybrid observability platform, and we say we’re powered by AI, of course. But what that really means is we are focused on observing whatever environment our customers are in. As you mentioned, Patrick, from the on-premise to the cloud, to on the edge, to multiple clouds, public cloud, private cloud, really, wherever our customers are at. And so, these are really the IT professionals that are going through this modernization journey as they’re moving to the cloud. And we’re able to bring all that data together, and then, put intelligence behind that, so our customers can predict their downtime, which ultimately, allows them to be focused on their strategic and business initiatives, which is really exciting. And seeing that transformation with our customers is pretty incredible.

Daniel Newman: And Taggart, you jump in, and like any good guest, they always kind of start answering your question. And the other thing, the secret of this business, right, you always answer the question you wanted to answer. So, if you’ve seen me a while, you’ll know that that’s something I always say. But Taggart, I’d also like you to kind of… You’re the product leader of the company.

Taggart Matthiesen: Yeah.

Daniel Newman: So, the challenges you started alluding to. Talk a little bit about the challenges that companies are facing with the proliferation of data, the rapid growth of cloud, and of course, now, the onset of AI in the last six to 12 months.

Taggart Matthiesen: Yeah. Well, I mean, I think I’ll start with maybe AI, in this case. If you were to walk the halls down there in the expo, it’s very difficult to see a sign that doesn’t have AI on it. And so, I think some of the challenges that people have right now is, what is your AI strategy? That’s what a lot of people are being asked right now. So, I think… Christina was talking about it a little bit earlier, and maybe we’ll get into a little bit of a deeper conversation on AI, but that’s where I think LogicMonitor shines, not only with our hybrid platform, but more importantly, kind of the layered intelligence approach that we have with AI. So, one is AI. The other one, I think, challenges is, if you look at the economic environment today, consolidation. So, tool consolidation, cost optimization, these are other challenges that companies are seeing that I think we’re fitting perfectly for.

Patrick Moorhead: Yeah. When you intersect that with… Again, I like to use the word fractalization because it sounds cool, but it’s also the truth.

Taggart Matthiesen: Yeah.

Patrick Moorhead: We used to have stovepipe applications that everything was on one server. The operating system, the data, and the application. And now, modern applications are, you have multiple APIs. They can be in multiple places. If you’re a financial institution, you have to have them in multiple clouds. You have multiple devices out there. We’re not debating whether the world is multi-cloud anymore. Okay.

Taggart Matthiesen: Right.

Patrick Moorhead: It’s just a reality. I’ve yet to talk to a Fortune 500 IT leader who says they aren’t using multiple clouds, and most of them, if they’ve been in business for over 15 years, have a lot of on-prem infrastructure. So, the need for this just keeps going up. And your space is red hot for those very reasons. And AI, really, has this ability to come in and just make it easier, just make it smarter. You’ve been using AI for a while, and I’m just imagining what you will be able to do with generative AI as you start looking at patterns across different types of dataset.
So, Christina, can you talk a little bit about… We’re going to go a little bit long-term, bigger… The vision for your company, long-term. Right? You already talk about the mission and what you do, but what is the vision and strategy, your vision and how you’re going to execute on that?

Christina Kosmowski: Yeah. I mean, absolutely. And I think what is exciting is AI, we say it’s been in our DNA from the beginning, and really been using these machine learning techniques. But the generative AI is really exciting, because, then, we can start getting into more business recommendations. And so, when we talk about being the strategic partner to CIOs, what does that really mean? We start with, being able to get the data, this important data that is fractured from everywhere, bring it together. We apply this intelligence now, so that we can get more predictive, and then, now, we can start to actually build business recommendations. We talk about the metrics that matter to our customers from a business perspective, and that’s what gets me really excited. And we’re seeing great examples of that already, where we’re transforming these IT operations folks who have traditionally been on their heels, constantly dealing with outages and problems, and the only folks who can solve these IT problems, to now, they’re being more on the business strategist side where they can flip that conversation around. And I think we’re going to just see even more and more of that as we continue to release these exciting features, both around the machine learning, as well as, some of the generative AI stuff we’re doing. And we’ve got stuff immediately on the roadmap that we’ve already delivered and are delivering here in the short term.

Patrick Moorhead: And when you talk about these, are these classic business metrics of reducing costs, driving revenue, or the operational ones that are connected to lowering costs, increasing revenue, improving stickiness with the customers?

Christina Kosmowski: Yeah. I mean, I think it’s both, right? I mean, I think certainly, first step, is our tool is allowing IT teams to be more strategic and reduce their time spent. So, on those IT operational costs. But now, we’re starting to put our dashboards in the hands of business users where we can actually say, “Hey, what are you doing from a revenue perspective?” “And how is the tools that are fueling that revenue, how does that downtime actually affect the revenue and affect your customer success?

Patrick Moorhead: Right.

Christina Kosmowski: And that’s where it’s really, really getting interesting.

Patrick Moorhead: Well, that’s smart, and it’s elevating, the science or the practice of observability to an entirely different level that, quite frankly, is more relevant. And probably, educating business leaders on things they didn’t even know. Right? Wait a second, like, hey, I knew my app was down or it didn’t feel right. Which one of the 14 points in the chain of this application that my customers are trying to buy something from us or get a vital piece of information is down and impacting us?

Taggart Matthiesen: Right. And I think that’s where these metrics really come into play, because to your point, what’s the point of monitoring, right? The system’s doing something. And so, it’s, you have to go beyond, just the fact that, hey, is this system up or what’s the uptime, or what’s the business relevance? And so, some of the stuff that we’ve done is not only do we cover from a hybrid perspective, as you were saying, multi cloud on prem, we allow you to bring all that in. We also bring in all of this context as well from like a troubleshooting perspective that we can talk about later. But where I get excited is kind of service insights where we can highlight what actually matters, what application matters, what does it driving. So, things like… Christina was talking about business metrics, like player experience, patient experience, right? Bringing it back to that experiential piece, because I think that’s actually where it really matters. And giving companies the tools to stitch that together to create those composite metrics that allow them to track that, that’s where it gets really powerful.

Daniel Newman: Taggart and Christina, one thing that I’ve noticed this year is the observability market has gotten a level of validation that, I think, is almost unprecedented. Very large enterprise software companies have made big, big bets. I don’t need to name names. I think everybody out there kind of-

Taggart Matthiesen: I don’t know what you’re talking about.

Daniel Newman: Yeah. And obviously, it’s easy. I like to think Gartner doesn’t exist. Geez. But in truth, I think it’s… I also, sometimes, think the validation of the big players is an accelerant for companies like LogicMonitor. You know what I’m saying?

Christina Kosmowski: Yeah.

Daniel Newman: Like it’s bringing attention, and they’re like, okay, well, clearly, this is a thing. We don’t necessarily have to get it there. We can get it out. But right now, you’ve got these ITOps needs, you’ve got CloudOps needs, you’ve got AIOps needs, how are you sort of taking what she’s saying as the vision, Taggart, on the technology and product side to clearly meet this vision of what the industry is saying? The industry is saying we can do it. How is LogicMonitor approaching that, and making sure that that you’re winning your share, or the opportunity that’s growing very quickly serviceable?

Taggart Matthiesen: Right. For sure. So, for those personas, I think the first one would be the hybrid platform. So, we talk about everyone’s moving to the cloud. The reality is, it’s more of a continuum where, yes, some workloads are moved to the cloud, but other workloads are actually better set on-prem. And you’re actually seeing some repatriation of that as well.

Patrick Moorhead: Yeah, I mean…

Taggart Matthiesen: So-

Patrick Moorhead: … we’re 14 years into the public cloud, and 75% of the data is still on-prem, and 90% of the spend in IT is still on prem. None of us are cloud deniers, but what’s undeniable is that, it’s not as easy and there’s not as many reasons to just move everything…

Taggart Matthiesen: Right.

Patrick Moorhead: … up to the public cloud.

Christina Kosmowski: Yeah.

Patrick Moorhead: So, the world is and, not or. Right?

Taggart Matthiesen: Yep.

Christina Kosmowski: Yeah. And there’s very few players that are focused on that hybrid experience. Right? You’ve got fully in the cloud or fully legacy players, and we, born in the cloud, SaaS-based, but are focused on that, on that hybrid piece.

Taggart Matthiesen: And getting back to some of those pain points, one is being able to have that hybrid ability where we can pretty much monitor anything with an IP address, be it on-prem or in the cloud. But two, kind of comes into the context. So, just because I’m monitoring it, so what? If there’s an issue, if I have to track something down and there’s some alert, now, I need to figure out what happened. So, one of the other things that LogicMonitor has is kind of this concept of context. So, it’s not just metrics, but it’s also logs and events as well, and stitching those together. So, for those kind of pain points for ITOps, or even CloudOps, is rationalizing that into a way where you see that alert, you can see all of that other context. Now, the last challenge becomes, gets really noisy when you have all of this information, and that’s where kind of these layers of intelligence that I talked about earlier comes really, really interesting. Because, again, if you’re dealing with an outage, do you want to look at a hundred thousand logs or a million logs? No. Our system can help identify the anomalous logs. It can also do things like sentiment and semantic analysis where we do pre-grouping for you. So, as an end user, when you’re trying to track that stuff down, not only do you have all the information, but you have the information that’s kind of like pre-filtered from an intelligence perspective, so you’re focusing on the stuff that matters. So that, I think, is probably the second one. And then, the third one, you know, we talk about moving, looking at these workloads is cost and cost rationalization. Because you do need to understand how do you… Again, in this economic environment, people are being pushed to do more with less. And so, making sure that you’re running optimal systems is pretty key.

Patrick Moorhead: So, where you are right now? I mean, there’s so much to be done, and I’m sure, Taggart, you’re saying, “Yeah, welcome to my world. Okay?”

Taggart Matthiesen: We never thought about that.

Christina Kosmowski: Yeah. We never like faster, or we can do more and…

Patrick Moorhead: Exactly. And I’m just curious, what is your north star for deciding what’s a priority and what’s not a priority? Because, I mean, we all know that generative AI wasn’t invented last year. Okay. There have been a big body of research, and I think we also know that generative AI is not better than machine learning for all types of problems you have to solve.

Taggart Matthiesen: Right.

Patrick Moorhead: And in tech, we live in a world of ands. I mean, we have analytics and ML and DL and generative AI. So, what is your north star for what you do first and how you prioritize?

Christina Kosmowski: Well, I’ll start, and then, Taggart can kind of go through. I mean, at the heart of it, is we put our customers at the center of it. And so, we’re always working with our customers and saying, “What are your needs?” “Where are you?” “Where can we focus on?” And so, we were able to co-develop with them. We’re able to get stuff in their hands before it’s even fully released. And that makes a huge difference, is to be able to be in there with them. But second of all, I think it is staying true to our core, which is, absolutely, we are here for the CIOs, kind of the office of IT, as they are going through this continuum, through this journey, as they’re thinking through how do they manage these workloads. And we’re focused on that. And that is our sweet spot, and that is, we’re not trying to be everything to everyone, and it’s really, really important. And then, we’ve always owned this data, and we’ve always had AI as part of our DNA, and so, it’s just natural for us to continue to evolve as the technology is as well. And then, Taggart’s team is working closely in helping identify how we prioritize within that.

Taggart Matthiesen: And I would say, the first thing that Christina said is focusing on the customer and the customer needs. And so, that’s where… You talk about generative AI, like we’ll get there and we have stuff in the works around that. But frankly, when we think about product and product innovation, it’s really purpose-built for what are the problems we’re trying to solve and focusing on the ones that exist for our customers today. So, hybrid observability, super, super critical to make sure that we can pretty much monitor anything. The second one comes into like MTTR. So, if I’m trying to troubleshoot something, do we have the context?

Patrick Moorhead: Right.

Taggart Matthiesen: Right? And so, that’s making sure that we stitch all that stuff together. And I would argue, the things that I was talking about earlier, we were talking about earlier on business metrics as well, is pushing it a layer up to make sure people understand the service and business metrics that associate back to those workloads. So, that’s critical. And then, the last one, in terms of innovation, again, with AI, it’s purpose-built. I keep pushing on that all the time, of like, let’s not just have this logo AI on the corner, but what is the problem you’re solving and what’s the level of intelligence that you’re using to solve it? Some of this stuff could just be like stochastic inference. It could be like forecasting. Other stuff is more heavy ML, where we’re doing anomaly detection for alert storms. So, we’re very, very focused on that stuff. We’re also excited about the generative piece as well, but again, we’re also being cautious on making sure what are the problems we’re trying to solve. The great one is, if you’re troubleshooting, generative to me helps with like Dynamic Runbooks. So, what are the things that others have used before to help solve some of those problems, and how can we bring up that dialogue in an interactive way that really, really helps with the troubleshooting?

Christina Kosmowski: Oh, yeah. I was just going to say, I mean, I think that that is a differentiator for us, is that we’ve started out in this hybrid space, and so, we know the data, and this data quality is… we own it, we have the context, we’ve got that. And that’s a huge advantage for us. It’s our core.

Patrick Moorhead: Yeah.

Taggart Matthiesen: You can see me getting excited here.

Christina Kosmowski: Yeah.

Patrick Moorhead: Yes.

Taggart Matthiesen: One of the things, and again, not pushing on competition or anything like that, but there are a lot of these like AIOps solutions that are bolt-ons, that simply have awareness based on APIs. That’s pretty much how they pull the data. Well, to Christina’s point, we’re the ones monitoring all of those instances, all of those services. And we have all of that context, all of that topological information, and all of that gets pulled into our system as well. So, if you think about like prediction and capabilities, all of that metadata and that context, we can actually push into our models. And that’s where I get really, really excited. Sorry. I get excited.

Daniel Newman: No, it’s great.

Patrick Moorhead: No. Listen, I love products. I get excited about products, and I get excited about people getting excited about products. So, we’re all in this.

Taggart Matthiesen: Okay. Good. Good. All right.

Daniel Newman: And if I may say, as we sort of wrap this up, is you’ll never go wrong when you are customer-obsessed. Just, I’ve never seen a customer-obsessed company with a good product do poorly. Again, you can have a bad product and that makes it very hard, but even average products with customer… So, I think you have the right priorities. From what I’m hearing, you’re in the right space at the right time. And for Pat and I, I think it’d be great to kind of keep tracking. I’d like to hear how this evolves. I’d like to see how generative becomes a bigger part of your platform. And it sounds like the kind of born purpose-built hybrid approach is really meeting where, at least, our conversations are with the actual end customers.

Patrick Moorhead: Yeah. And the reality is to say the ratio for generative AI is like 95:5, okay. And we all know it, we all talk about it. But as a tech industry, we’re all excited about the potential. But the reality is that enterprises are slow rolling. I mean, they just are, and they’re starting at very low risk internal data and things like that. But yeah, I agree with Dan. I mean, on the customer-obsessed, I also demarcate between that as a marketing tagline and the reality of it. And sometimes, ironically, you’re doing things that your customers… You know is going to be better for your customers, even though they’re telling you of where this needs to go, and that’s where the challenge comes in. Because, in a way where… You might have more vision about what the future looks like, and that’s a tough one. But customer-obsessed companies, they make those hard decisions. And again, thanks for coming on the show. Really appreciate the time.

Taggart Matthiesen: Yeah. Well, thank you.

Christina Kosmowski: Yeah, thanks for having us. It’s great.

Patrick Moorhead: Absolutely.

Daniel Newman: All right, everybody, you heard it here in The Six Five Lounge at AWS re:Invent 2023 in Las Vegas. Hit subscribe. Join us for all the coverage here at the show. And of course, join us for all of our shows, because we enjoy these conversations. Great executives, great thinkers, great leaders, great technology. But for this show, for Patrick Moorhead, for me, we got to say goodbye. See y’all later.

Author Information

Daniel is the CEO of The Futurum Group. Living his life at the intersection of people and technology, Daniel works with the world’s largest technology brands exploring Digital Transformation and how it is influencing the enterprise.

From the leading edge of AI to global technology policy, Daniel makes the connections between business, people and tech that are required for companies to benefit most from their technology investments. Daniel is a top 5 globally ranked industry analyst and his ideas are regularly cited or shared in television appearances by CNBC, Bloomberg, Wall Street Journal and hundreds of other sites around the world.

A 7x Best-Selling Author including his most recent book “Human/Machine.” Daniel is also a Forbes and MarketWatch (Dow Jones) contributor.

An MBA and Former Graduate Adjunct Faculty, Daniel is an Austin Texas transplant after 40 years in Chicago. His speaking takes him around the world each year as he shares his vision of the role technology will play in our future.

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