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Survey Reveals 80 Percent of Teams Intend to Practice Observability within Two Years

By Deirdre Mahon  |   Last modified on May 4, 2020

New Research shows observable systems and practices lead to production excellence

San Francisco, Calif., May 5, 2020 – Honeycomb, a provider of observability for the distributed systems to understand, debug, and improve production systems, today released research findings on the maturity of the observability market. Findings reveal that 80 percent of teams within organizations are practicing, or intend to practice, observability within two years. With over 400 responses from engineering practitioners across multiple industries and organization sizes, the report examines the challenges teams face and the practices they are implementing as they progress on their observability journey to achieve production excellence. 

Key findings include: 

  • While nearly half are not currently practicing observability, 75 percent of those who haven’t started, plan to practice at an advanced level within the next two years
  • Developers on advanced teams are more confident in their ability to detect bugs after code is deployed to production, and possess the confidence to solve problems when incidents occur. 
  • More than one in three are evolving their observability practices
    • This group reports practicing observability, but their practices and processes suggest they are in the earliest stages of adoption, or have confused observability with using tangential tooling, including monitoring or log management.
    • A quarter of the survey respondents exhibit advanced observability practices 
      • This cohort is early in their journey with some observability tooling or processes but not both.
      • Respondents with advanced observability are more aware of where their tech debt lies, are more proactive about paying it down and are more confident in detecting bugs in production with high levels of satisfied end-users. 
      • Practitioners performing advanced observability are focused on outcomes, including higher-quality instrumented code, predictable release cadences, confidence in detecting bugs and the ability to resolve and maintain resilient systems.
  • Ten percent of respondents report a combination of practices and tooling that reflect  highly advanced observability 
  • About 90 percent of advanced teams report their teams set and measure service level indicators (SLIs)
  • These teams are leveraging observability tooling and/or processes on a team or organization-wide basis and also prioritize key practices to achieve performance excellence. 
  • Companies represented by this cohort have a high number of developers (42 percent have 100+ developers) 

“Observability is the key to enabling teams to operate at a consistently high-performing level, resulting in far less technical debt, a faster time to recovery, and swift, predictable deploys,” said Charity Majors, CTO and co-founder of “Without observability-driven development, teams will be struggling along in the dark and constantly playing catchup, instead of delighting their users.”

To learn more about production excellence & survey read blog

To receive a copy of the report, please visit:

The study was conducted by ClearPath Strategies, an independent strategic consulting and public opinion research firm. While the margin of sampling error cannot technically be calculated for online panel populations where the relationship between sample and universe is unknown, the margin of sampling error for equivalent representative samples would be +/- 4.9 percent.

About Honeycomb

Honeycomb provides Observability for modern development teams to learn, debug, and improve their production systems efficiently so that business-critical apps perform with minimal disruption to users. Honeycomb’s customers rely on the product for fast incident response, system optimization and delivering pain-free releases that translates to happy devs and happy customers. Learn more at and follow on twitter.



Deirdre Mahon



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