discovery education logoEven as most Americans were sneaking in our last summer getaways and backyard BBQs, Discovery Education was preparing for its busiest season: the start of a new school year. The leading provider of digital content and professional development for K-12 classrooms, Discovery Education serves 3 million educators and over 30 million students, including half of U.S. classrooms and over 40% of U.K. primary schools.

Over the last few years, educators have found digital content to be an increasingly important part of their efforts to create modern classroom environments that engage students and prepare them for college and career success. In fact, Discovery Education’s unique digital content and digital textbooks, or Techbooks, are replacing traditional hardcover textbooks as a primary resource for classroom instruction.

With this growth, the importance of ensuring the availability and performance of the company’s services for classrooms globally required Erik Meier, lead software engineer for Discovery Education’s Systems and Development Operations team, to seek out a way to increase visibility into their application portfolio and help them reduce resolution time. Enter New Relic APM.

One view to rule them all

Screen Shot 2015-10-15 at 12.05.15 PM“What’s been key for us is when we do have issues, we’re now able to proactively identify them in a short period of time,” says Meier. “We’ve also been able to stay ahead and get visibility over areas that need performance optimizations.”

Meier and the team also now have a consolidated dashboard in New Relic, which gives them a holistic view of their application portfolio.

This consolidated view of their systems has been important to Meier as he and the team embrace a DevOps culture. According to Meier, “It’s a prerequisite now—engineers and developers have to care about the entire systems stack. Rolling out a new app? Make sure it’s monitored by New Relic.”

The team has continued to find fresh ways to use New Relic. One example: Whenever new servers have been spun up, everything canshutterstock_139406252 be nicely tied in to New Relic automatically. The frontend development team also has recently rolled out New Relic Browser, which has helped them identify where the customer experience could be improved.

Based on these initial performance improvements, Meier and team believe they can continue to grow the ways they can apply software analytics to help Discovery Education stay at the head of the class!


Blackboard image  and classroom image courtesy of

Steve Naventi is New Relic's senior technology/product PR manager. He has led technology communications for a wide range of companies, both in-house and at external agencies. View posts by .

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