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xMatters IT Management OverviewUNIXBusinessApplication

What is xMatters IT Management?

xMatters, an Everbridge company, is a service reliability platform that helps DevOps, SREs, and operations teams rapidly deliver products at scale by automating workflows and ensuring infrastructure and applications are always working. The xMatters code-free workflow builder, adaptive approach to incident management, and real-time performance analytics all support a single goal: deliver customer happiness.

To learn more, request a demo.

  • Reliable services, rapid innovation: Automate operations workflows, ensure applications are always working, and deliver remarkable products at scale with the xMatters service reliability platform.
  • Automate on the xMatters service reliability platform: Move faster with confidence. Our no-code and low-code integrations let you build flexible workflows to address issues proactively—even during deployments.
  • Frictionless on-call: Manage on-call seamlessly. Automatically escalate to the right people, schedule with ease, and act on detailed alerts from anywhere.
  • Adaptive Incident Management: Stay resilient in any scenario with our adaptive approach to incident management. Automate resolution, protect customers from disruptions, and learn from each event.
  • Signal Intelligence: Put situations in context and cut through the noise of multiple monitoring tools with filtering and suppression, alert correlation, enriched notifications, and routing based on role or function.
  • Actionable Analytics: Get quick insights into key metrics to understand inefficiencies, boosting collaboration and productivity across engineering and operations teams.

xMatters IT Management is also known as xMatters.

xMatters IT Management Buyer's Guide

Download the xMatters IT Management Buyer's Guide including reviews and more. Updated: November 2021

xMatters IT Management Customers

Over 2.7 million users trust xMatters daily at successful startups and global giants including athenahealth, BMC Software, Box, Credit Suisse, Danske Bank, Experian, NVIDIA, ViaSat and Vodafone. xMatters is headquartered in San Ramon, California and has offices worldwide. 

Visit our website to see how business like yours found solutions with xMatters.

xMatters IT Management Video

Pricing Advice

What users are saying about xMatters IT Management pricing:
  • "Cost is probably my biggest concern. I know the solution was recently acquired by Everbridge, and Everbridge was one of the competitors that was included in our RFP five years ago. Everbridge's costs were astronomical compared to where every other solution was, not just xMatters."
  • "The pricing is tiered so we took that into account. If we were to license 10 or 20 people, that would be a certain price. And if we were to license 50 or 100, there would be a little bit of discounting. But the per-user license was right in line with what we were expecting."
  • "It feels like good value in the sense that the service is excellent. The people above me who look at such things have renewed it a couple of times, and I think they would have thought whether it was good value, whether it was wildly overpriced, or whether there were better and cheaper alternatives. So, from that perspective, the pricing is fair and proper."
  • "The pricing is too high... we procured 150 licenses and we have almost 1,500 users in IT. We had to come up with a few ideas for determining which users get a license and which users don't need one. Due to the limitation of the number of licenses, we were unable to integrate the user profiles with Active Directory."
  • "We're currently per license. We're paying around $44,000 per year for 80 full users and 300 standard users. For a new implementation, we also need to pay for an expert."
  • "I am not really privy to how much my client is paying for this service. They just tell me the number of licenses that they have. Every time that I say, "I need extra licenses to make sure that all Level 1 and 2s have their own xMatters account," they keep telling me that it is too expensive. If the only purpose is to call people, it doesn't justify the cost of paying more than the number of licenses that they already have."
  • "The pricing and licensing are okay. I wish that the user licenses were cheaper but the stakeholder licenses are at a reasonable cost."

xMatters IT Management Reviews

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ES
Senior Manager of Technology Operations at a retailer with 10,001+ employees
Real User
Gave us the ability to validate whether messages were going out

Pros and Cons

  • "We saw the value by being able to import everyone's schedule into one common central repository and have one tool for all the operational teams, or any team for that matter. It gave us the technology to find out who is on call. The incident management of xMatters' integration was another key aspect, where we could say, "You can configure this when a high ticket fires.""
  • "What I would like it to do is tell me anytime there is a P1 incident, except when the ticket is assigned to this team or when this word is in the summary, but there is no exclusion option. I have been complaining about this for a couple years. At one point, we created a ticket for this with the developers to review. I assume that once enough people complain about it, they will bump it up in priority to work on. However, if not enough people think it is an issue, then they prioritize their work and work on other features and functionality. However, this is something that has been challenging for us because we have needed to find ways to work around it or just deal with it. So, I would love to see an exclusion option."

What is our primary use case?

We have it integrated into our incident management system. We also have it integrated into a homegrown alerting and monitoring solution, where it does some automation and self-healing behind the scenes. 

We are working on an email integration for our service desk, similar to how xMatters themselves have it set up. 

It provides incident notifications, subscription notifications, etc. 

We use it for triggered tasks or events. Whenever a high ticket is created, it automatically notifies whomever is on call for the ticket that is assigned to a particular group, which was really one of our first use cases for it.

How has it helped my organization?

We saw the value by being able to import everyone's schedule into one common central repository and have one tool for all the operational teams, or any team for that matter. It gave us the technology to find out who is on call. The incident management of xMatters' integration was another key aspect, where we could say, "You can configure this when a high ticket fires." 

We had people who would say, "Oh, I didn't get that phone call," or, "I didn't hear that message." The level of logging within xMatters is pretty extensive, which has allowed us to confirm or deny if someone is saying, "Hey, I didn't get that message." It says right here in the log that you not only got it, but you answered it and hung up halfway through the message. That was a little bit of a game changer for us because it gave us the ability to validate whether or not these messages were going out. This wasn't much of a problem previously, but it has been just another tool in our tool belt to be able to confirm that this stuff has been working as expected. It puts the onus on the engineering and development teams to respond when they have been being paged or notified.

I use xMatters logs on the operational side. The logs are not really something that the other teams use as much. We use it to just make sure the notifications are going out and being delivered successfully to individuals or teams when we are sending them out. I get a rare call or request from someone on the apps teams, to say, "Can you show me a little bit of the reporting to show me how many times that my team was notified or paged from xMatters since January?" Then, I will go in and show them how they can run those reports, but also get that data for them. They may be trying to justify additional headcount next year, or something along those lines, e.g., some teams get contacted more often than others and these teams seem to always get contacted more." They are looking for anything, which they can take advantage of, to show the volume of work or amount of times that they are getting called.

I have some folks in our reliability engineering team who have taken advantage of xMatters and integrated it with a couple of our monitoring systems, then wrote some custom code to do some notifications. It not only can receive incident data from Jira, but it can also reverse that workflow and create incidents based off of different alerts triggered from external services. So, they will see an alert fire, create a Jira incident, notify the team that is responsible for resolving that issue, and then record that acceptance or decline from that notification into the ticket. It then essentially correlates those events. In a couple of cases, we have even had some help via self-healing or automation that would kick off and run like a script to recycle a server, cloud instance, or something automatically based on that alert. After that is done, it will do a validation check. If the service is responding as expected, then it will automatically close out the ticket.

We have some standards in place for technology. These go back over 10 years, even before xMatters. Having a tool that keeps it all in context has helped. It does automatic escalation, so we bake that into whatever the on-call team is. It will contact the primary, waiting 10 minutes and contacting the secondary, then waiting another five minutes and contacting the manager, and finally waiting five more minutes and contacting the director. That has been the standard for over a decade. In the past, it required a human to do that, so maybe 10 minutes was actually 12 minutes after the first wait time. Since being automated, there has been a level of consistency. It knows, "My wait time's up. I will go onto the next person." 

It has the ability to decline. Thus, if anybody in the escalation path is unavailable, then they can hit the "Decline" option. It then circumvents that wait period. It knows, "Okay, I'm just going to go ahead and call this next person right away." That is not something that we had with the manual condition. We would need to talk to the person, wait and get their voicemail, and then wonder if they were available or not. In some instances, it has expedited the escalation. The solution hasn't really moved the needle too much on the technology here. It just streamlines it a little bit and makes a slight improvement on an existing process.

We have incorporated xMatters into our application delivery workflows for notification purposes. When deployments are made or going to be made, whether they are in a scheduled status, in progress, or completed, we leverage notifications to notify people that something has been done, is being done, or will be done. From a notification perspective, it posts messages to various teams and channels based on the condition or status of that deployment. We don't have it integrated in the pipeline itself.

What is most valuable?

There are a lot of tools that can do standard notifications. However, the one feature that separates xMatters from others is the ability for it to integrate with any system that has REST API or SOAP API capabilities.

The intuitiveness and flexibility of xMatters is very good, when it comes to customizing on-call schedules, rotations, and escalations. It allows our entire technology organization to be configured and have accounts in xMatters. We don't really use it too much outside of technology, but the ability to manage that schedule, kind of setting it and forgetting it. 

It allows us to have rotations. Folks can decide if some teams rotate Monday morning, some Friday afternoon, have different shifts, etc. The temporary absence feature is pretty widely used, so they don't have to go in and rearrange the permanent schedule, but make those changes ad hoc, saying, "Hey, I'm going away three months from now. Just plan it." No matter where they are in the rotation, it will substitute a member of their choosing. That has been very helpful.

The mobile app is now almost ahead of the game. There are some features that the mobile has that the desktop version doesn't have, such as getting a notification reminder when you will be on-call. You can set that timeframe to let you know, "Hey, you start on-call tomorrow or next week," or whatever the predetermined time frame is. You really can't do that with any desktop feature. You have to do that from the mobile app.

We use the ability to send notifications from our service desk, e.g., a lot of our operational teams notify stakeholders of outages and other things like that. Its templates eliminate or minimize any type of typos, grammatical mistakes, etc. This has brought a level of consistency to our organization as we communicate to larger management teams, stakeholders, and teammates.

Right now, the breadth of features provided by xMatters are good. I work with John a lot. We just had a call with him on Monday to talk about the next release that is coming out. We are going to set up some time next week to look at some of the feature sets that will be included in that release. Every few months, it seems like we are getting a new release. That adds something. It shows the level of commitment that the developers have to making additional improvements.

What needs improvement?

The mobile app has come a long way since we brought xMatters on board. Previously, it had lacked some features and functionality. 

Subscriptions are pretty intuitive, allowing qualifiers to say, "If it includes or contains this value, letter, or phrase, then it is helpful." Something that has been a challenge for us is the ability to add the exclude option, as part of one of those qualifiers. For example, if I said that I want to know anytime the incident priority is P1. Therefore, send me an email notification so I can be aware anytime that is the case. That is easy to do. Unfortunately, our networking team creates a P1 every time one of our store's network is down, even though it is on cell backup, which is a secondary circuit. So, the store isn't actually down. It is just that the primary is down. However, by our incident definitions, it is still a P one. This happens more often than not. 

What I would like it to do is tell me anytime there is a P1 incident, except when the ticket is assigned to this team or when this word is in the summary, but there is no exclusion option. I have been complaining about this for a couple years. At one point, we created a ticket for this with the developers to review. I assume that once enough people complain about it, they will bump it up in priority to work on. However, if not enough people think it is an issue, then they prioritize their work and work on other features and functionality. However, this is something that has been challenging for us because we have needed to find ways to work around it or just deal with it. So, I would love to see an exclusion option.

I would like them to extend the level of logging for the timeframe. There are different types of logs. Some are six months and some might be a year. We would like the option to go back so we can run year-over-year reports. I think that would be advantageous because oftentimes it doesn't extend two full years, so I can't do a comparison. Sometimes, it doesn't even extend to a year depending on what it is, so I can't go back. For example, holidays are really big for us now in terms of preparation. So, someone might ask, "Hey, can you tell me what we did last year? How many times was I notified? Do I have to staff up for this?" However, I can't go back that far with some of the data to do that. 

For how long have I used the solution?

We have been using this solution for four and a half to five years.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

It does not require any type of maintenance. There is really nothing that we need to do to care and feed it. There are always new integrations that we are working on as well as ideas of how we can use it better by taking advantage of some of its feature sets.

How are customer service and support?

The technical support is very good. They are very quick to respond. I know some of their guys on a first name basis, going from our technical account manager, John, all the way down to the folks who are behind the scenes, responding to Level 1, 2, and 3 issues. They have always been very responsive when we need anything or have any questions.

I would rate their technical support at around nine (out of 10), including the online help. When you are in the application itself and click on the question mark, I love how it just provides information about the page that you are on specifically. It is always updated and the content is always relevant. I have made many comments over the years that it has some of the more useful help files and documentation compared to some of the other applications I've worked with, which is why I am rating it fairly high.

How would you rate customer service and support?

Positive

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

We didn't have a solution prior to this one that had this level of capability. We had communication tools (notification tools), which were very rudimentary black and white. They were very inexpensive as well, but it was just simply a list of the email addresses, potentially mobile numbers, and a notification. Then, it could send a text and email, letting people know that something was there. Separately, there was a spreadsheet that listed all the different technology teammates and the teams themselves. Then, the individual technology teams would determine what they used to manage their on-call schedule. Some people used Excel spreadsheets, some people used Outlook calendars, and some people used anything in between that they found valuable to them. There was no standard or consistency for the operational teams on the call calendars.

When we brought in xMatters, it sort of standardized it, to say, "Hey, this is what we are using moving forward. You are required to stop using your Excel spreadsheet or Outlook calendar, instead baking your information in here." 

This was initially met with some skepticism five years ago where people would say, "We have a real unique case." However, xMatters' features having different shifts so you can: 

  • Create multiple or overlapping shifts. 
  • Create rotations based on a recurring date and time based on the number of events. 
  • Cycle first to last or last of first. 

There are a lot of options and features that surprised our larger organization. For example, with the spreadsheet, we had to go in and update it ourselves, even though it was pretty simple. Now, we literally can just go in, set this up, and configure it. We have some pretty complex teams who have third-parties that do some support for us overnight, only Monday through Friday, but even the most challenging on-call schedules were able to be configured. I think that won them over at the time, since we never had anything that managed that prior to xMatters.

We were looking for a solution like this because it was a lot of manual work, on all fronts, for teams to manage. There was no standard for the operational teams to view or find out. Oftentimes, we would get old, stale information or the spreadsheet wasn't updated in the right place. As we continue to grow, this just becomes more challenging. We also wanted to standardize our messaging and have the ability to template things for consistency’s sake, just to kind of pull it all together. So, we could say. "When this event happens, these stakeholders should know." Previously, that was always manual. We would have SOPs and processes that we would review, then we would have to craft that message up. For example, we may have an old Outlook draft that we would kind of pull up, etc.

Previously, we had BMC Remedy, but now we are on Jira. So, we were able to integrate with Remedy, and say, "When these conditions are met, automatically notify the on-call team and let them know that they have a high ticket in their queue. It requires a response." That provided a level of tracking for the operational side to be able to say, "Okay, Erik responded on his mobile phone with 'Accept.'" That would, in turn, update the ticket, to say, "Erik is now assigned this ticket because he accepted it." Once we moved over to JIRA, we lost a little bit of the functionality, because it's not as intuitive as Remedy, but we have still been able to make it work. 

The automation of our incident notification process was really useful when we had Remedy. Remedy was awful at emailing people. You would have a ticket assigned to you in Remedy, and it was supposed to send you an email to let you know. However, more times than not, the email server for Remedy would end up getting tied up and fail. Then, those notifications didn't go out or were going out really late. All of that would impact the performance of the tool itself. So, we made a conscious decision to turn off or disable all email notifications coming out of Remedy. We moved them over to xMatters. So, we can know when a ticket is assigned to a group, individual, or if it has a certain keyword. field, or property equal to something. All of that can be done out of xMatters. That has really increased the level of adoption for some of our technology teammates. There are about 800 subscriptions out there now. 

When we moved to Jira, it was able to email, but some similar things have happened where the emailing of stuff can be delayed. Most of the time, the majority of people in technology now don't really complain about that because they already have their subscriptions in place. We just had to update them to point towards Jira instead of Remedy when we decommission the Remedy servers.

How was the initial setup?

I went through Launchpad, in California, for a week to get a feel for the administrative and onboarding side of things. 

What about the implementation team?

We did use some folks on the professional services side to help us get it integrated with our incident management tool. Then, it was just a matter of creating some standards around it and getting buy-in from the larger organization, saying, "This is what we are going to use going forward. This is how we will do these things." 

Anytime a new teammate in technology joins the company, they need to make a request, which says, "You need to submit this request so you can get your new xMatters account and be added to the right team." It is on them to make sure they fall into the right order of on-call. So, there has been a level of training on just how to use the tool, depending on what the role has been within technology, but that has not been difficult to do. It has just been time-consuming going through the motions to get everyone up to speed.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

We had a second instance of xMatters on our business continuity team at the company. They recently went in a different direction because their contract was up and the renewal costs went up significantly compared to where they used to be. So, there is a level of concern about the acquisition regarding Everbridge's potential desire to increase prices and take advantage of this very good product.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

Cost is probably my biggest concern. I know the solution was recently acquired by Everbridge, and Everbridge was one of the competitors that was included in our RFP five years ago. Everbridge's costs were astronomical compared to where every other solution was, not just xMatters. 

What other advice do I have?

Most of the time, Sev-1s aren't something that a tool like xMatters would be able to mitigate or resolve. We do a pretty good job with problem management, incident follow-ups, and post incident reviews. Oftentimes, we try to get ahead of those before they become a Sev-1. It might help in the lower levels, when it is still a Sev-2 or Sev-3. That way, it doesn't bubble up to become a Sev-1. However, I can't think of any specific use cases where we had a P1 incident and we were able to say, "Let's use xMatters to do X, Y, Z, and prevent that from happening going forward."

I would rate this solution overall as eight out of 10.

Disclosure: IT Central Station contacted the reviewer to collect the review and to validate authenticity. The reviewer was referred by the vendor, but the review is not subject to editing or approval by the vendor.
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NickYoung
Director of Enterprise Reporting, Visualization & Analytics at a university with 1,001-5,000 employees
Real User
Top 20
Enabled us to meet our "lights out" goal and repurpose staff to do work of greater value

Pros and Cons

  • "The automatic logging that's built into xMatters, especially the timeline of events, is very helpful because we can figure out why a particular person got a call... Having that level of detail built-in makes it really easy for me or the managers to prove that's what happened, and we can self-serve that information. It gives people the autonomy to know why they got a call."
  • "We would like to see a greater variety of integrations with ServiceNow. It works fine as it is, but an enhancement would be the ability to interact with the major incident module in ServiceNow... The way our major incident process works, when an incident is elevated from a P1 to a major incident, that is an extra flag in ServiceNow. It would be awesome to have xMatters get notification when something goes from a P1 to a major and then have it go through a different workflow, rather than our regular P1."

What is our primary use case?

We use xMatters as our automated on-call engagement system. We use ServiceNow for major incident management and processing for the university's IT services. When there is an incident of sufficient priority, impact, or urgency, we make use of the integration between ServiceNow and xMatters. xMatters contacts our staff members who are on call to make them aware that there's an issue going on. It gets them the information they need to log in and fix whatever might be happening. xMatters can do a lot of other things, but we use it primarily for our major incident response and automated on-call processes.

How has it helped my organization?

In 2019, we embarked on a "lights out" process. We had staff members sitting in our operations center, 24/7/365. They had to watch the screens and make sure, when something went "bump" in the night or something went down, to physically pick up the phone and call somebody. In December of 2019, were able to bring those staff members back into a nine-to-five type of job, repurpose them, and move them into other roles. We let the machines do the hard work of notifying people if something goes wrong. xMatters was a big part of that because it allowed our managers to maintain their own rosters, and cell phones didn't have to be handed from one person to another. The process just worked really well. That was of benefit for our central IT.

We also onboarded our institution's public safety/police department. Before, if they had an issue where everything went down and they couldn't do anything from their office, they would either call or walk over to the IT building and find somebody in the operations center, and then the operation center would call somebody from networks. Now, we have onboarded several select people from the police station. They have the ability to use the xMatters mobile app to hit a big red button that contacts our major incident managers directly, without them having to do much else. That means they don't have to physically come work with us or find us. We were able to replace that physical process that existed prior to 2019 with a fully automated process now.

The automation provided by xMatters has helped us respond to incidents. It puts the responsibility for responding on the groups and the people who are responsible for providing service. They're getting a notification when something happens that meets a certain threshold. That's in contrast to the subjective process we had in place previously where the person who was in the operations center decided not to call somebody for whatever reason. Now that it's automated and everybody is playing by the same rules, there have been improvements on the monitoring side of things and in how things are architected. They know that if something goes down, they're going to get a call. Having the managers and the people closer to the process, with the ability to manage their own rosters, results in a little bit more responsibility, rather than just passing it off to the person who's sitting in the operations center.

The automated notification process has made people understand that they have to fix things before they go "bump" in the night. They know there is no longer a person sitting in our operations center who might decide not to wake somebody up. The machines are going to detect that something has gone wrong and they're going to notify xMatters, and xMatters is going to notify the group. Tangentially, that results in people proactively fixing things ahead of time. In turn, with people being a little bit more proactive in handling things, issues don't get up to a priority-one level as much. But when it happens, xMatters does its job and gets out of the way really quickly. It helps us deal with incidents when they happen.

In addition, the targeted notifications have helped reduce response times to IT incidents. It doesn't require a person in the operations center to call five people five times. It handles things synchronously. I would absolutely posit that our response time is quicker than it used to be.

What is most valuable?

In terms of its flexibility, we've been using it for close to two years, and we have yet to encounter a situation where somebody hasn't been enabled to configure it to work the way we want. We can configure groups to be members of other groups, enabling us to nest sequences of rosters, and that has been super-helpful in a number of scenarios. We provided a little bit of training and a little bit of documentation for the managers who had to manage their rosters and the sequence of calls, and since then, we really haven't had to do a lot, other than some reminders. But we just tell them the URL and that they should log in. They can figure it out from there. The UI is understandable. It's fairly straightforward to understand how you add a user or add a member to the roster or add a device. It doesn't take a lot of administrative overhead and that's important for us. We don't have a lot of people to manage every little thing, so people being able to do it themselves is pretty important.

And because we use it primarily for our major incident response and automated on-call processes, the automatic logging that's built into xMatters, especially the timeline of events, is very helpful because we can figure out why a particular person got a call. We can see, for instance, that it was because an incident showed up in that person's group and it went to the first person on-call and that person hit skip or ignore. It then went to the next person, called all of their devices, but they never acknowledged anything. Then it went to the next person and that's who actually picked up. Having that level of detail built-in makes it really easy for me or the managers to prove that's what happened, and we can self-serve that information. It gives people the autonomy to know why they got a call. Just click here and you'll see exactly why the fourth person in the roster got the call instead of the first.

The integration of xMatters with ServiceNow worked pretty easily. There was a little bit of configuration and coordination with our ServiceNow, but once it was set up it just worked. It does the right thing for us. We don't want every single instance that ServiceNow handles to generate an on-call notification. We only want priority-one and priority-two to result in notifications, for certain groups, via xMatters. It does that really well. That integration part was super-easy. I have also done some work with the xMatters API to pull out information about users and groups and rosters into a Google sheet. I used a Google Apps Script to interact with xMatters and pull information out for reporting purposes. That was also really easy. We use that information to see how many people are in xMatters, who's licensed, and if people have left the university we can make sure we kill off their accounts.

xMatters has also helped us build workflows that meet our needs. In comparison to all of the organizations that use xMatters, our workflows are not complex, but it does what it does well and easily. Our simple workflows consist of an incident coming in and the right group being contacted. Within that group it goes through the sequence of people in the roster, in the right order. That was super-easy to set up. It was also very easy to set up another simple workflow where we use Zoom and Google Meet for our bridge process. If somebody isn't sure about something that is going on they can send out a "Please jump on the bridge line real quick" message. We can use either the xMatters bridge or the Zoom or Google Meet bridges that we have set up. That helps us control access and costs because we're already using Zoom and Google.

What needs improvement?

We would like to see a greater variety of integrations with ServiceNow. It works fine as it is, but an enhancement would be the ability to interact with the major incident module in ServiceNow. In ServiceNow, you can create an incident which is priority-1, 2, 3 or 4. The existing xMatters integration allows you to filter on just P1s and P2s, or on all priorities, or on just select ones. The way our major incident process works, when an incident is elevated from a P1 to a major incident, that is an extra flag in ServiceNow. It would be awesome to have xMatters get notification when something goes from a P1 to a major and then have it go through a different workflow, rather than our regular P1. 

For how long have I used the solution?

We purchased it in the latter half of 2019, so we've been using xMatters IT Management for about two years.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

The stability has been great. I can't think of a time in the last two years that it's been down when we've needed it. They've done upgrades, but I can't remember it ever being down.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

The pricing was good, from our perspective, for scaling. It hits the mark. If we had to add hundreds of users we'd take a look at what kinds of bulk discount rates they may have.

As far as the technology goes, it seems to me that scaling is pretty easy to manage. You start with the ability to put groups inside of groups and have nested rosters. There are workflows that are specific to groups or to particular processes and that makes it fairly easy to configure. I would expect it to be a pretty scalable solution if we decided to roll it out in a significant way.

Currently, we have 105 people licensed, and 102 of them are in central IT. The other three are in the police department. Everybody in IT who is licensed is an active user because they are on-call in whatever rotation has been defined.

It's yet to be decided if we will increase our usage. In higher education there have been some budget cuts and position losses. It's always a moving target regarding whether we're going to expand or contract. At this point, I don't think we'll expand the use of xMatters because we've already licensed it to everybody in IT who needs to be licensed. If we had to roll it out to other departments around the university, I don't see it being an issue. But we are a heavily centralized IT operation here. We don't have a lot of distributed IT infrastructure or staff. Pretty much everything has to flow through IT.

How are customer service and support?

Their support is quick. They literally react within minutes, at times, after you put a ticket in. They've been great with any support issue we have had. That was especially true early on. We haven't had one in a while, but when we had questions that weren't bugs but just our not understanding something, they were getting back to us within minutes.

How would you rate customer service and support?

Positive

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

We did not have something that was similar to xMatters. What we had was an old-fashioned analog method of on-call management, in which people would share a cell phone. The cell phone would be handed from person to person as they went off-call. We had staff who sat in our operations center, 24/7/365. They had the list of phone numbers in a document on their machines that gave them the cell phone numbers to call for each group. So there was a system, but it wasn't a modern solution.

How was the initial setup?

We did a couple of walkthrough training sessions with xMatters staff. It involved a core group from our side, people who were going to be the admins or the main people using and configuring xMatters. I then did a handful of walkthroughs with different groups in our IT department. Those were about 45 minutes to an hour in length and I showed them the interface and how to add their devices. We did a little bit of documentation, but not much, about our process as it relates to xMatters. We then rolled it out. We did all of the training within a few weeks, once we got close to that "lights out"  deadline at the end of December of 2019.

In terms of our infrastructure, we just added the module for ServiceNow, filled in some details according to the documentation, and hit save. That was it.

As for maintenance, the only thing we've had to do is add users and remove users. It's a set-it-and-forget-it solution.

What was our ROI?

There have been savings in process and overhead that we have been able to realize. We no longer need to have our staff looking at a screen overnight, on weekends, and during the day, every day of the year. We repurposed those staff members to work of higher value.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

It's billed per user license.

The way we approached it was to look at who actually needed to be on-call and licensed people accordingly. The pricing is tiered so we took that into account. If we were to license 10 or 20 people, that would be a certain price. And if we were to license 50 or 100, there would be a little bit of discounting. But the per-user license was right in line with what we were expecting.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

We looked at PagerDuty, Opsgenie, and VictorOps. We considered all of them and looked at some demos, but we didn't get as far as doing a full proof of concept. The main reason we ended up going with xMatters was that it seemed that a lot of the alternatives I mentioned were built on the premise of being the actual incident management tool, and not just an on-call management tool. We were very clear that we needed a tool to do on-call management, and that ServiceNow was going to be our incident management tool. We just needed something to bring people together by notifying their mobile devices or by making a phone call to alert them in the middle of the night. xMatters fit that perfectly.

What other advice do I have?

I don't think I've ever had a complaint about it. xMatters just works.

Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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Learn what your peers think about xMatters IT Management. Get advice and tips from experienced pros sharing their opinions. Updated: November 2021.
552,136 professionals have used our research since 2012.
NC
Service Delivery Coordinator at a computer software company with 10,001+ employees
Real User
Exemplary support, incredibly stable, and increases efficiency and ticket resolution time

Pros and Cons

  • "The automated callouts, without a doubt, are most valuable. They have been a huge gain for our company. Previous to xMatters, there was no real management of the on-call resources or rotas. So, having that centralized and automated has been a huge gain."
  • "The only thing that has caught us out a little bit is that on certain screens, you don't have the same admin options. There should be more consistency with the admin options because not all screens provide you with the same options. As an administrator, it feels like they should always be there. For example, on some screens, there is an Export button that provides fantastic, detail-rich exports, which obviously are very handy because then you can, as an administrator, do your administration, and extract what has been done to share with or prove to others. However, the Export button is not always present, and on the screens where it isn't, you miss it. You're like, "Oh, where's the Export button?", which can be quite problematic. There should be more consistency in the UI in terms of available options for anything that is referenced data or configurable. If you can put it in, there should be a way to run an export function to essentially pull it out. That's the only improvement that I can really think of."

What is our primary use case?

We're relatively light on use cases. We primarily use it for notifications. We're not using the Incident Management module, but we are using the SOAP service. So, we use it for integration and for holding all of our rotas and groups, and that's our main use case. Our local teams go into xMatters to invoke those groups based upon the tickets that get created in ServiceNow. They'll be for a particular team, and that team's on-call rota is held in xMatters.

How has it helped my organization?

It has reduced the time to engage engineers. This reduced time leads to improved ticket resolution and ultimately, to improved service provision for our clients, which is the ultimate gain. Our systems are down for less time because the engineers are engaged much faster.

We also quite heavily use subscriptions. We use those by way of just simple notifications to third-party stakeholders, and that has proven to be a big gain because it makes customers aware of the incidents. In addition to the resolving engineers, you can add third-party stakeholders in the notifications. Customers have been very keen on taking up subscriptions because it gives notifications to their stakeholders about the status changes of an incident and what's going on. I know that has been very well received.

We have automated our incident notification process with xMatters via subscription. So, essentially, as the support groups and engineers have been engaged to go and resolve, we also have numerous subscriptions set up so that a client's stakeholders and our internal stakeholders are notified at the same time. They would be client delivery managers from our side of the fence and then the actual client contact points on the client's side. It just gives us a very quick, easy, and effective way to increase notification awareness, and it has been very well received by the clients because they were somewhat in the dark previously. They would raise a ticket, and it would go to a resolving group, and then they would just wait, whereas this way, they're more in the loop but without being swamped with the technical detail. It is just at the awareness level, but it has proven to be very popular.

We have built workflows that meet our needs via xMatters. They're important to us. They provide very good and very configurable automation. We've found them to be very configurable and portable. We can make a workflow for client A, export it, and reimport it for client B. If it needs to be customized, we make a few changes, and it is up and running for client B in next to no time. We found the workflows to be very intuitive, very powerful, and very well received by those who would benefit from this functionality. We've found it to be a real win.

We've done custom coding where required. Most of the time, our use cases are quite simple. Wherever required, we have done extra coding, but it has been minimal. We have a couple of webhook-type workflows, and we've added extra code in there to essentially filter. There are a lot of alerts coming out of a particular system, and we've added some custom code in there to only activate certain elements of the workflow against certain priorities. 

We were able to customize the workflow so that it is only for targeted incidents or particular criteria. It expanded the flexibility or functionality of xMatters. We were able to pick an out-of-the-box workflow and customize it to summarize clients only in particular trigger cases. They wanted everything captured but only certain things to be raised. So, we had to do an amount of coding in there to interrogate their initial methods, make the webhook do certain things, and make the workflow do certain things based upon the invalid data. We found that very easy to achieve. The customer was very pleased.

What is most valuable?

The automated callouts, without a doubt, are valuable. They have been a huge gain for our company. Previous to xMatters, there was no real management of the on-call resources or rotas. So, having that centralized and automated has been a huge gain. 

The support groups themselves are the most useful part.

It is incredible in terms of intuitiveness and flexibility of customization. It is an excellent product. It is very usable. We are the local administration within our organization, and with the tool itself being incredibly intuitive and the support being possibly the best I've ever encountered, it is a joy to work on. It is very intuitive and very easy to work on.

We've got some webhook-type integrations with standalone systems that we have from our various clients. These integrations were very easy to do. A lot of applications that you'd like to integrate with already exist as modules in xMatters. So, a lot of the work is done for you, or it certainly leads you through it very clearly. These integrations are very easy and very intuitive to set up.

We have used the REST API as well, and it was very good. We found it to be very powerful and very well supported in terms of the API endpoints. If we needed an endpoint that was missing or wasn't available, we were able to get that added easily. It has been very good.

What needs improvement?

The only thing that has caught us out a little bit is that on certain screens, you don't have the same admin options. There should be more consistency with the admin options because not all screens provide you with the same options. As an administrator, it feels like they should always be there. For example, on some screens, there is an Export button that provides fantastic, detail-rich exports, which obviously are very handy because then you can, as an administrator, do your administration, and extract what has been done to share with or prove to others. However, the Export button is not always present, and on the screens where it isn't, you miss it. You're like, "Oh, where's the Export button?", which can be quite problematic. There should be more consistency in the UI in terms of available options for anything that is referenced data or configurable. If you can put it in, there should be a way to run an export function to essentially pull it out. That's the only improvement that I can really think of. There is a little inconsistency, but I believe that has been simply explained to us. xMatters has been developed and redeveloped many times. So, different hands have touched it, and I guess not everyone thinks that an Export button is required, but we've certainly found it to be a very useful function.

For how long have I used the solution?

It predates me, and I think we're into our third year.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

It is near perfect. It is one of the most stable pieces of software that I've ever used in more than 20 years in IT. It is an incredibly stable platform.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

With our limited experience, it seems to be perfectly scalable. You can make it do as much or as little as required. The ability to make those changes very quickly in a live environment is very good because if a new requirement comes in, we can turn it around almost as quickly as we can type. There are very few barriers to stop you from scaling as required.

In our environment, we have less than a thousand users.

How are customer service and support?

Their support is exemplary. I would rate them a 10 out of 10 or even higher. In 20 years in IT, without a shadow of a doubt, it is the best support I've ever received from a vendor. They are so attentive and knowledgeable. They present themselves with such a friendly and family-based vibe or approach that they stand out from the crowd. You almost want it to go wrong so that you have an excuse to speak to their support. They are exemplary. 

I cannot speak highly enough of the quality of their interactions, whether that's raising support through the support links on the tool itself, or when we have a monthly catch-up call with Jamie Mallon. He always comes to us with tons of knowledge, tons of new news, and loads of warmth and engagement, and that's pretty standard. They do things in a very cool way. The quality of support that I get from them is very noticeable as compared to any other vendor I've worked with, bigger or smaller. The xMatters guys are definitely the best. They do things in a brilliant way, and for Everbridge, their new parent company, there is a lot to learn. They should be adopting as much of xMatters' style as they can because they really are excellent.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

We didn't have a single solution. People were passing around spreadsheets, and we had a Lotus Notes database that some people could access to refer to the information, but not everyone. So, it was essentially just a mess. From that point of view, xMatters has just given a huge boost. xMatters is far superior in the way that it is highly configurable, and its features really support the actual use cases of an engineer. If an engineer is absent, they mark themselves as away, and if you have set the rotas correctly, xMatters will automatically schedule in a replacement resource. That's a very simple thing, but without xMatters, that was a very laborious and manual task for engineers. If they forget to do it, then suddenly, you don't find anyone on call. The way xMatters automates this is just far superior to the previous solution that we had.

How was the initial setup?

It predates my time on the team. So, I don't know about the initial setup. 

Its maintenance is practically zero. From our side, we're primarily doing account creations as the talent pool of resolving engineers changes and shifts. We also configure any new workflow or webhook requirements that come through. We set up the groups and support users, but they configure their own rotas because we like to get them to own that side of it so that they can look after their own team going forward. We initially support them through the rota creations to make sure it is all set up in the way they need it to be operational.

This maintenance time varies depending on the demand. We've got a relatively stable take-up at this point. At its busiest, we were spending half a working week on it. At this stage, where we've got things configured and pretty stable, we are down to a very minimal amount of hands-on support that is required from our end, which is great. The system just runs. We're called into it when there's an issue or when there's a new take on of some kind, but for the majority of it, we're able to just let it run and do its thing.

Three people work on xMatters day-to-day. We're support engineers, and this is one of the things that we look after. We support it in addition to numerous other systems we all look after. We don't look after just xMatters. There is not a great deal of work for us to deal with on a day-to-day basis when it comes to xMatters.

What was our ROI?

I'm not involved with the numbers in that regard, but logically, we must have had an ROI because we've seen service gains. We've seen increased efficiency. It obviously passed in terms of time and cost savings across the board. All of our incidents are dealt with quicker now because the engineers are engaged so much quicker.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

I can't really comment on the value in terms of comparison. It could be the most expensive product in the world. It could also be the cheapest, or it could be safely in the middle. 

It feels like good value in the sense that the service is excellent. The people above me who look at such things have renewed it a couple of times, and I think they would have thought whether it was good value, whether it was wildly overpriced, or whether there were better and cheaper alternatives. So, from that perspective, the pricing is fair and proper.

What other advice do I have?

I would advise others to go for it. It is great. My advice would be to engage with the xMatters resources themselves because they will engage and guide a potential new customer very fairly. They won't oversell. They will get you the correct solution, and they will be very helpful in helping you to get that to work. So, my advice would be to go for it 100%.

I would rate it a 10 out of 10. Nothing is perfect, and there is always room for improvement, but it is very hard to see where. This is an excellent product.

Disclosure: IT Central Station contacted the reviewer to collect the review and to validate authenticity. The reviewer was referred by the vendor, but the review is not subject to editing or approval by the vendor.
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Philip Colmer
Director, Information Services at LINARO LTD
Real User
Top 20
Gives me flexibility in ways that other platforms don't

Pros and Cons

  • "One of the things that really attracted me is in workflows, you can write your own custom steps in JavaScript. You are not restricted to the steps that they provide. If you can write it in JavaScript, you can pretty much do anything. It gives me flexibility in ways that other platforms don't. For example, the online dashboard system we use is not a widely used one, but they have an API. So, I'm able to write the JavaScript steps to do things like check if a system's in the maintenance window or create an instant on the dashboard or change the status of an instant. I'm not dependent on the dashboard provider or xMatters creating steps for me."
  • "As an agent, as someone who is on call, I can mark an absence time and I can optionally put somebody in my place, but once you've done that, you can't edit it. You have to delete it and create a new absence, which is annoying, but it's not a massive issue. It's a minor annoyance. That's probably about the only thing I can come up with because I absolutely love the product. It's met our needs so well."

What is our primary use case?

We use AWS CloudWatch to monitor our infrastructure, and when CloudWatch detects an anomaly, it sends an alarm to xMatters, which triggers a workflow. Depending on what the alarm is, the workflow will either try to remediate it automatically, e.g if it's the server running out of disc space, or it will look at our online dashboard to see if the affected server is in a maintenance window. If it is, it doesn't do anything else, because an alarm would be expected during a maintenance window. If it's not in any maintenance window, then it generates an instant on the dashboard so that our customers can see that the system's affected, and then it generates an xMatters alert for the on-call team, and then xMatters takes care of notifying whoever is currently on call that there's a problem to be investigated.

How has it helped my organization?

We recently released a software as a service platform and that required us to provide 24/7 support, something the company's never done before. I'd previously been using xMatters just within IT to monitor the systems for us, but not really for alerting us. For this service, we said, okay. We have a team doing UK hours during the week, the team doing US hours during the week, the team doing Asia hours during the week, and then we have the four-weekend teams that it rotates through. So there's that complexity that it handles for us. We've got monitoring of the systems, again, with CloudWatch, but then feeding into xMatters to alert who's on call. It then notifies the Slack channel for everyone so that you can see that something happened. Plus we've also got it tied in with JIRA service desk, so that if a customer puts in a high priority ticket, one that has to be dealt with within four hours, that raises an xMatters incident so that the on-call staff knows that they've got to deal with it very quickly. We just would not have been able to do that if we didn't know about xMatters. 

xMatters helped to automate our incident notification processes. If CloudWatch tells us that something's gone wrong, the workflow sets up an incident within xMatters and we've got it set so that it notifies the people on call. It also notifies the management team just so that they're aware that something's happened. Within xMatters, there's an incident template so that you can use that to record the steps that you take to deal with the incident so that when it's all dealt with afterward, you have everything in one place to create a post-mortem report from.

This automation of incident notification processes has immensely affected our ability to respond to incidents. It means that we can be on call on a weekend, but actually not have to sit in front of a computer all the time watching for things all the time. We can just go about, relatively speaking, our normal weekend lives, and when the phone goes off with an alert, then we know we've got an incident to deal with. It sets up a Slack channel specifically for that incident so that any chatter around what's gone wrong and how to deal with it is kept in one place and not in the middle of the general conversation, and that's all done automatically.

It has absolutely helped build workflows that meet our needs. I've looked at other platforms and I don't think I've come across anything else that allows you to write code to actually execute within the workflow, and that has absolutely 100% solved problems that we really need to deal with. These workflows also helped to address issues proactively. The classic one is the workflow to deal with the server running at disk space. So, we have it set up so that if the amount of free space falls below 15%, then it triggers the alarm and the alarm triggers the workflow, and the workflow doubles the space, and that is proactive. It handles this situation before the server actually runs out of space and that's helped us a lot as well.

We use the coding to expand the flexibility. The disk expansion one is 100% JavaScript that I've written. There are no xMatters bits in there at all. It's all written by me and actually the benefit there was that xMatters themselves don't have any support for calling AWS APIs, and so I actually had to work out how to do that. AWS APIs are quite funky around signed headers and stuff like that. That took quite a bit of doing, but it's something I've now made open source so anyone else who wants to call the APIs for xMatters, it's all there for them to get on with.

The fact that we can have different teams being assigned different areas of responsibility means that if an alarm goes off, you target the specific group for that responsibility. So, it means you're getting the right person at the right time.

What is most valuable?

One of the things that really attracted me is in workflows, you can write your own custom steps in JavaScript. You are not restricted to the steps that they provide. If you can write it in JavaScript, you can pretty much do anything. It gives me flexibility in ways that other platforms don't. For example, the online dashboard system we use is not a widely used one, but they have an API. So, I'm able to write the JavaScript steps to do things like check if a system's in the maintenance window or create an instant on the dashboard or change the status of an instant. I'm not dependent on the dashboard provider or xMatters creating steps for me.

It's very flexible. The intuitiveness of it is not great. It can be a little bit challenging to achieve all of the combinations and permutations you might want. I've had to build it out a little bit. It's not simple, but it's powerful enough that I can do it.

We have integrated xMatters with CloudWatch and the dashboard. We've actually got two different dashboards depending on which platform we're monitoring. I've integrated with that, I've integrated with Slack, I've integrated it with Google Chat. It's really easy to integrate it with third-party products.

They have a very strong selection of third-party integrations that they support. Out-of-the-box, Slack's there, Teams is there, Zoom is there if you want to set up a video call for an incident. You've got third-party platforms for data management, but even if they don't have something out-of-the-box, so long as the product you're trying to integrate with has an API and you are fairly conversant in JavaScript, you can do it yourself. It's that good.

We also use REST API. It's really strong at helping to customize processes and information. The only shortcoming I would identify is that when they're rolling out new features, the REST API can take a release or two to catch up, and that's because they'll be firming up on what the functionality is of the feature before allowing you to then start accessing it via the API. Initially, it's only handled by built-in steps. The Rest API is really powerful.

What needs improvement?

As an agent, as someone who is on call, I can mark an absence time and I can optionally put somebody in my place, but once you've done that, you can't edit it. You have to delete it and create a new absence, which is annoying, but it's not a massive issue. It's a minor annoyance. That's probably about the only thing I can come up with because I absolutely love the product. It's met our needs so well.

For how long have I used the solution?

I have been using xMatters for two to three years. 

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

It's very stable. They do quarterly releases of new features. We've never had an outage on xMatters at all. It's rock-solid from our perspective.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

It's really scalable. I don't think they give much away about how it's running behind the scenes, but they don't seem to place any constraints on how many workflows you have, what you do in the workflows, how many agents you have since you pay for them, that sort of thing. I don't remember any limitations that they announced.

We're paying for 15 users at the moment. Most of them are support agents for the SaaS product.

How are customer service and support?

The staff for xMatters is brilliant. When we first started using xMatters we were on their free plan.

The great thing about their free plan is that it only really constrains you to the number of agents you can have using it. There are no constraints on workflows or anything like that, which is unlike other products that might have a free version they normally put limits in. With xMatters, it's only the number of users, but even there, you can get full technical support from them. When I first started writing my own steps in the workflows, not only do they help you, but they encourage you. You get really positive feedback from them and that helps you to feel positive about the changes you're making.

How would you rate customer service and support?

Positive

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

I have experience with Atlassian. The intuitiveness becomes a trade-off. I think that if a system offers a simple level of managing who's on call and things like that, then it is more intuitive to use, but you are constrained by that simplicity, and this is what I was saying about xMatters. It's a really powerful platform. You can do a lot with it, but that means that they have this challenge of how do they make it more intuitive to achieve certain aspects.

What was our ROI?

Initially, we were using it at zero cost and it was 100% meeting our needs, and I can't say fairer than that. And then when I was asked by the department that was setting up this SaaS product what I would suggest. I said use what I'm using. It will 100% meet your needs and I've got the experience of using it. We didn't even look any further because we knew we had a product that would do what we needed it to do.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

I think it is excellent value for money. I can't remember what we're paying now, but the per agent cost is extremely reasonable for what the platform does. It's entirely agnostic of where you are getting your alarms from. You could even trigger an alarm by email if you want. It's that open to what triggers an event. 

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

I looked at Opsgenie briefly, which was acquired by Atlassian, and I didn't get on with that as well.

I evaluated it separately and before xMatters. I was looking for a solution. We are quite an Atlassian user. We used quite a few of their products, so that's why I looked at Opsgenie first, but ultimately didn't feel that it was a good fit for what we were needing, so I gave up on it and didn't think about much else. Then I came across xMatters at a conference. They told me about the free offering and all of that good stuff and I thought that there was nothing to lose in trying this one and it just went from there.

What other advice do I have?

I would rate it a nine out of ten. It's not perfect, but it's really damn close to it.

My advice would be to give it a try. It literally costs nothing to try it and there are a lot of integrations that you can easily add that xMatters provides. You don't have to do coding. You don't have to know JavaScript. It's really easy to put the steps onto a workflow and join them together. If you check for results and branch off to do different things depending on what the results are, there's basically a lot you can do without having to do any coding, but if you're comfortable with JavaScript, then the sky's the limit. You can really go for it.

Disclosure: IT Central Station contacted the reviewer to collect the review and to validate authenticity. The reviewer was referred by the vendor, but the review is not subject to editing or approval by the vendor.
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Rohan Samudre
Staff Platform System Admin at BMC Software, Inc.
Real User
Saves us time in identifying the right on-call person, helping to avoid delays in addressing issues

Pros and Cons

  • "xMatters is helpful for getting the right on-call resources. That is a key factor. It is also very user-friendly, and just a little documentation helps you to understand things such as how on-calls are configured, how groups are configured, and how users update their on-call devices."
  • "We have to create an Excel sheet for onboarding users and then upload it. But if an employee resigns, we don't have any checkpoints to validate whether the user is still active or not. We have to do that manually every week: Check who has left the organization, and do a cross-check, whether this person had any licenses or signed in to xMatters."

What is our primary use case?

We have three instances of xMatters. One is for customer support, one is for our internal IT, and the third, that we recently procured, is the SaaS version.

We have integrated two of our xMatters instances, the IT instance for ITSM incident management, and the SaaS version. We also recently worked on integrating customer support between xMatters and both instances, so that xMatters can be triggered from the SaaS instance and there will be a notification in the customer support instance. And vice versa: An alert from customer support will reach out to the on-call in the SaaS instance. And now we are working on integrating xMatters with change management and SaaS. In addition, we integrated xMatters with Salesforce.

How has it helped my organization?

At one time I was working in our global network operations center. We had a few difficulties in reaching out to the on-call resource. I would call someone only for that person to say, "Okay, I'm not on-call this week. You should call this person," and that person's number was unreachable. Then I would have to call the first person again and he would say, "Okay, now call this person," and he might also not be the right person. It was a time-consuming process and there was a delay in dealing with the service disruption. Implementing xMatters has helped us to identify who the on-call person is, and the built-in escalation really helps.

Managers can also get an idea of which on-call resources acknowledged an alert, and whether it was escalated to the next level or the third level.

Also, the targeted, content-rich notifications have helped to reduce response times, although we haven't measured by how much.

We have only integrated our Sev-1 incidences. Once a Sev-1 is generated, an xMatters alert is automatically triggered and the on-call person acknowledges the event. With that acknowledegment, the incident's status is changed to "in progress." As a result, responses to incidents are at 100 percent. We also have a checkpoint. When there is an event, a NOC engineer reaches out, every 15 minutes, to the person who has acknowledged the event, about whether there is a service disruption or not. With the quick responses to alerts, we have time to figure out what our outage notification or disruption message will be to our end customers. All of this definitely helps us to reduce the communication involved, as well as expedite the restoration of service. 

What is most valuable?

xMatters is helpful for getting the right on-call resources. That is a key factor. It is also very user-friendly, and just a little documentation helps you to understand things such as how on-calls are configured, how groups are configured, and how users update their on-call devices.

We're also able to specify messages for the different channels, such as text messages, voicemail, or email. That is quite helpful for us.

In addition, xMatters' reporting capabilities help managers to identify the peers and escalation that we have configured. It helps them see how many times an on-call either did not receive an alert or escalated it.

Another key feature set that xMatters offers is the API calls through which you can trigger xMatters. Because every application has its API, we just have to set up small workflows.

We also use xMatters logs on a daily basis. All incidents are created in ITSM and the logging capabilities are easy to use. We have integrated our xMatters with Okta. As a result, the authentication process takes care of the username and password. We haven't provided our users a bypass link so that they can directly log in to xMatters. Users have to log in using their Okta authentications.

With xMatters we have the flexibility to grant permissions to managers so that they can update their on-call schedules. They can change who is available in the next week, who is on the roster, et cetera. Managers can decide which person will be working on which shift. Some of our teams work 24/7, some work 24/5, and a few of our teams work 18/5. Managing all of them is a tough job and we addressed it by having the managers update their own on-call lists.

What needs improvement?

We have integrated two different xMatters instances. When something triggers in xMatters, we get a message in that instance about who responded, the device type, et cetera. But if we try to trigger it to a different instance, we don't get that kind of information. For that scenario we have built a workaround to get the details of the event, and that we have received a response for it. That's one of the major things that could be improved.

Another issue is related to the reporting. We have to know what keyword to search for. When we type something in, we get a few suggestions. If the suggestions are not enough, we need to go back to the specific event message and look at the actual event, and learn what needs to be updated based on that. We get that information from the Properties tab.

Thirdly, we have to create an Excel sheet for onboarding users and then upload it. But if an employee resigns, we don't have any checkpoints to validate whether the user is still active or not. We have to do that manually every week: Check who has left the organization, and do a cross-check on whether that person had any licenses or signed in to xMatters. If so, we have to make that profile inactive for a month and then release the license.

Finally, I get regular updates on the new features that are being released by xMatters. If they could provide a short presentation or video on these new features, and how we can leverage them based on our use case, that would really help.

For how long have I used the solution?

We initially procured xMatters back in 2017 or 2018. We were looking to share these kinds of ideas with our internal and external customers who use xMatters, as well as ITSM.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

xMatters is stable.

I only recollect once that we needed some maintenance, but that was also part of the 99 percent availability. The maintenance was done with zero downtime. I don't recall that we have had to do any maintenance on xMatters.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

In terms of scalability, I'm managing two different instances of xMatters and someone else is taking care of the customer support instance. I believe that instance has 9,000 licenses. For IT we recently purchased 30 more so now we now have 180, and for our SaaS instance there are 200.

Whether we will increase our usage of xMatters will depend on how our business develops.

How are customer service and support?

The technical support team is really helpful. They know what we are asking and what we are looking for. They don't work by saying "Step one, step two, step three." Whenever we submit a ticket, even if it is a P3 or P4, we immediately get an acknowledegment that they are reviewing our request and that they will get back to us. It's not like, "Okay, it's P4, let's respond after two or three days." Overall, their tech support has really helped us. And if the requirements or the scope go beyond their capabilities, they will involve our customer relationship manager. Once he is in the picture, if required, he will tell us we need to involve professional services.

But so far, there has not been an issue that a support person was unable to resolve for us. Some of the time there has been some back-and-forth communication, but in the end, we have been provided with a resolution.

How would you rate customer service and support?

Positive

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

Before xMatters we had a small portal where people could update their mobile numbers, whereas the ITSM product contained the on-call list. Managers would go there to update that list. But it was not being maintained properly and we had a tough time reaching the actual on-call person. With our first priority being to return our service back to available when there is a disruption, we got to know xMatters and replaced the old system.

How was the initial setup?

As this was a new application for us, we were not aware of what might need to be done. The professional services team was engaged at some point and, through them, we got a few ideas about how this would help us, how we could integrate it, how the user profiles are built, how the groups are created, et cetera. 

The process of integrating xMatters with other applications was not too difficult. We already have the GIT files readily available, so it was just a matter of updating the scripts, connecting the dots, and it was really helpful in building the workflows.

What was our ROI?

The issue that is impacting things is the licensing. The features are really good. The solution really helps us to find the appropriate person, per issue, and to resolve each one as soon as possible. But what makes things difficult is the licensing. We have to manage the number of users we onboard, and we need a buffer of 10 or 20 licenses because in an emergency or crisis situation, we might need all those buffer licenses.

Still, we have definitely seen cost savings when we are restoring a service disruption. When a Sev-1 is initiated, xMatters is triggered and calls the right person and he acknowledges. On a weekly basis it saves us between $100 and $200.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

Every customer would like a free ride, of course, and being a customer, I definitely feel the pricing is too high.

A caveat here is that initially we procured 150 licenses and we have almost 1,500 users in IT. We had to come up with a few ideas for determining which users get a license and which users don't need one. Due to the limitation of the number of licenses, we were unable to integrate the user profiles with Active Directory. 

Also, having that many licenses versus that many employees won't help us. It would be good if there was a feature where we could trigger all the users we need in a single go. That would really help in a crisis situation.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

We didn't evaluate any other options. When we had the xMatters demo and we felt that it was the right product for us. The integration ability was the main aspect, as were the user profiles, the on-call list, and the delivery channels for messages. All of those really helped in our decision to purchase the xMatters solution.

What other advice do I have?

The biggest lesson I have learned from using xMatters is that end-users have to manage their own profiles and know their availability for the on-call schedule. Also, if someone is not available to be on-call, the absence/replacement feature in xMatters really helps. The replacement enables us to know who is replacing whom, from when to when, and from which team. And with the recent launch of workflows, we can build our own workflows. I reviewed a few videos on integrating Teams or Skype with xMatters and that looks like a key feature.

The documentation from xMatters, in general, is very clear and the support is very helpful.

I use xMatters on a day-to-day basis. I have an eye on all three instances we have. I know which user is replaced by which user. And whenever the support team reaches out to me saying, "This event was triggered to me, but it should not have been triggered to me," we have all the logs to help us identify why that event was triggered to that person or why it didn't trigger to a given person. If we need any more help, again, the support team is there. We just submit a request and we get assistance. 

It has been a good journey over the last three years, getting more details about, and insights into, the product. It really helps us.

Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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Ana Cotes
Incident and Major Incident Manager at Brinks Incorporated
Real User
Top 20
Improves the mean time to resolve incidents and allows us to customize text messages and send them from a specific phone number

Pros and Cons

  • "The on-call schedule that they have for groups is amazing in terms of how it works and how it triggers. You don't need to do anything. You just upload the users, and you have the calendar of the schedules. It is amazing how it works and how easy it is to work with this feature."
  • "When you are not using the conference bridge from xMatters and you are using an external one, it is a little bit hard to get the person whom xMatters calls to jump directly to the external bridge. They need to hang up the phone and then get to the email to get the URL so that they can jump on the bridge. There is no direct connection from xMatters to that external bridge, but I understand that part of the business."

What is our primary use case?

We use it mostly for major incidents. To contact, we use the group on-call schedule feature. We use it to communicate and notify our IT stakeholders and executives.

We are about to use it for incident alerting on applications. We will first start using it for one application, and then we will see how it goes.

How has it helped my organization?

Previously, we used to do everything manually. We used to call our on-call resources manually. If we wanted to inform someone, we used to use Outlook email. Now, it is much easier because we're using the subscriptions based on location and affected services, which is amazing.

We have the Inform with xMatters feature and the Engage with xMatters feature. We are also using the major incident feature where it sends SMS and text messages. We use it only to communicate with the IT leadership, and it is great. Previously, we used to send text messages manually using our cell phones. I'm not in the US. I live in Panama. So, when I send a message, it normally gets a different number. So, no one knew how to add my number or whatever number they get from my cell phone to their safe contact list. Now, we have a specific phone number that doesn't change. So, they know who is calling, why they are calling, or why they are getting messages. That's very good. The customization of those text messages from the web service is also great.

It has helped us to build workflows that meet our needs. The ServiceNow workflow is very good. The Major Incident Best Practices workflow is another one. For our next application, there would be a new workflow that I need to create. We are also using the Emergency Change Management workflow, but the most important thing for us is major incident management. We use it for all Sev-1 and Sev-2 incidents and almost everything related to major incidents.

xMatters workflows helped us to address issues proactively. From the Major Incident Best Practices workflow, I created a workflow directly to Teams to post a notification on our Teams channel so that everyone who isn't subscribed on xMatters can see the notification that we're sending out. It helps a lot as well. I did it myself, and it was pretty easy.

xMatters provides targeted, content-rich notifications to reduce response times in our organizations. It has reduced the response time by at least 50%. Previously, we used to call people manually. 

xMatters on-call schedules and streamlined escalations have helped us to reduce Sev-1 incidents in our organization. We can contact any person. There is a 20% to 25% improvement because Sev-1 incidents are more related to the vendor. They are not internal issues.

What is most valuable?

The on-call schedule that they have for groups is amazing in terms of how it works and how it triggers. You don't need to do anything. You just upload the users, and you have the calendar of the schedules. It is amazing how it works and how easy it is to work with this feature.

It is very intuitive for someone who is not technical. Some of the groups that we have are not technical, and as soon as they get on the mobile app, if they want to change on-call with someone else, they just quickly change. It is very intuitive, which helps a lot. 

We have integrated it with Microsoft Teams and Cisco WebEx Teams. We have also integrated it with ServiceNow. It is not at all hard to integrate it with other tools. It is very easy to integrate. You just need to follow the steps that they have on the screen, and that's it. I believe xMatters can integrate with a lot of tools. The problem that I'm seeing on our side is that we don't use most of the tools. Our main ITSM tool is ServiceNow, and I have already integrated it. I'm trying to figure out how to integrate custom applications that are only used at Brinks.

We use xMatters REST API for ServiceNow. It is very good. I haven't had any problems so far with that.

What needs improvement?

The integration with Inform with xMatters is too customized. It should be a little bit more friendly.

When you are not using the conference bridge from xMatters and you are using an external one, it is a little bit hard to get the person whom xMatters calls to jump directly to the external bridge. They need to hang up the phone and then get to the email to get the URL so that they can jump on the bridge. There is no direct connection from xMatters to that external bridge, but I understand that part of the business.

On the web version, the on-call schedule is a little bit more technical. When you're creating the on-call schedule, you need someone who actually knows the product to create those. The problem is that we have not been using on-calls. Before xMatters, we used to use Excel Sheets. So, it is very complicated to do an on-call and figure out who's on-call. I know that I'm trying not to override one with the other one. So, I don't know if that can get better, but if they can, I know they will go there. They are the ones who are going to figure it out. They're very good at that.

For how long have I used the solution?

We have been using this solution for almost a year.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

Its stability is great. It is almost 99%. Everything works as expected, and I haven't had any issues with them.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

Its scalability is great. I haven't had any issues. We have 76 technical users using xMatters, and we have around 250 to 300 basic users who are only getting notified by email.

We are using less than 10% features that xMatters has right now. We have plans to enable the incident management feature. As soon as we do that, I believe that the user or technical teams would have more visibility. They are reluctant to use ServiceNow, and this way, they can see that they have an incident, and it will probably give a better experience to our end-users.

In terms of integration with the rest of the applications, we're going to start with this new application. We have a lot of monitoring tools, and if we do everything right, as soon as ServiceNow gets an incident, we can trigger an event instead of waiting for an end-user to advise that something is happening. Currently, our monitoring tools are using actual people to monitor the queue, alerts, and other things. It is not as automatic as it should be. So, we are using less than 10% from xMatters.

How are customer service and technical support?

They have been wonderful. They are great, and they helped me with everything. They are very knowledgeable about my environment. Their response time and everything is very good. I would rate them a 10 out of 10.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

We used Excel, and we literally used to type the name of the week, month, and the name. So, it wasn't like a solution. It was just uploading data. It wasn't that good.

How was the initial setup?

It is a cloud version, so they do all the updates and maintenance. We didn't have to do any preparation to start using it.

What about the implementation team?

I implemented it with xMatters.

What was our ROI?

I would say we have got an ROI, but I need to do the document report.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

We're currently per license. We're paying around $44,000 per year for 80 full users and 300 standard users. For a new implementation, we also need to pay for an expert.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

We looked at Evergreen. I know that xMatters merged with another company, and we tried that one as well. I don't remember its name. We settled on xMatters because of the text message feature. We wanted to see everything in a single box on the incidence, but the other applications were divided into boxes. The text was too long, and we didn't like that. 

What other advice do I have?

I would advise others to ask for a PoC to understand the product to make sure that's what they're looking for. They should also check if they're going to use the text message feature and the calls. They should know how much they are going to use and if it is covered with their contract. That's applicable to most of the companies because that's an expensive service. 

I would also advise others to pick all xMatters trainings. There are three to four minutes ones. They help you to understand what you can accomplish from the application.

We have been using xMatters mostly to communicate and engage. We are going to use xMatters logs as a part of our operations. We're going to implement it for new applications. The implementation would start next week, and it is pretty simple. We're going to use email-based alerting. So, we only need to add the xMatters email there. The rest of the workflow needs to be added in xMatters directly. It is pretty easy because that application doesn't have API connections.

We haven't automated our ticket incident notification process because we have some challenges on our side, and we're still trying to get better at incident management. We're trying to change the culture before we enable that feature.

We haven't made use of coding to expand the flexibility or functionality of xMatters workflows. I haven't gone that far. We're mostly in the workflows and the flow designer.

It has not increased the application release rate, but everything has gone as expected.

The biggest solution that I have learned from using this solution is how to automatize the communication and engagement with the IT team to improve the mean time to resolve incidents.

I would rate xMatters IT Management a 10 out of 10. It is awesome considering the breadth of features it provides and the cost of the solution.

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

Public Cloud
Disclosure: IT Central Station contacted the reviewer to collect the review and to validate authenticity. The reviewer was referred by the vendor, but the review is not subject to editing or approval by the vendor.
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John Paul Pammit
ITSM Lead at a manufacturing company with 5,001-10,000 employees
Real User
Reduces the mean time to restore a service

Pros and Cons

  • "It reduces the mean time to restore a service. Before, it would probably take an hour to get everybody settled down. With the integrations right now, if somebody flags a major incident, then everyone is on a call in the next 15 minutes."
  • "It took me awhile to get used to whatever was available in the interface. The interface from two years ago was a bit more confusing when looking at where you should go"

What is our primary use case?

The use case is mostly getting people on a call as fast as possible, especially since we heavily use ServiceNow. In one account, it has really been more to reduce the time to resolve issues. This has usually been very difficult since they don't have a paging system. They would start asking the command center to call this person or that person, then multiple people were being called, joining a bridge, sending emails to a distribution list, and searching names in the directory. 

When I came to this account, they had already been using it. It was really more about protecting the workflows when I came in. 

How has it helped my organization?

It reduces the mean time to restore a service. Before, it would probably take an hour to get everybody settled down. With the integrations right now, if somebody flags a major incident, then everyone is on a call in the next 15 minutes.

We usually only use xMatters for major incidents and when multiple teams are needed. We don't really use them for anything else. When there is a major incident, you need probably three to five teams on a bridge to resolve an issue. If you are looking for the right person and finding out who is on shift, then you have already wasted an hour, at least, trying to bring in people. So, if our service level agreement for priority one is two hours, then imagine wasting an hour trying to bring everybody because that means you have one hour remaining to fix an issue. So, it definitely did help. Our time did go down for priority one cases. Our average went from more than four to six hours down to about two to three hours.

xMatters has helped to automate our incident notification process. Because, if there is an integration where they flag a ticket, that is a major incident. It will then be automatically assigned to our incident managers. When ServiceNow assigns a ticket to us, the integration will automatically page our incident managers, and say, "Somebody said that there is a major incident." That has definitely helped because we are also not running 24/7 operations. So, it kind of helped ensure that somebody was looking at it at any given point of time. However, other teams don't really use it for notifications on their day-to day-operations. The only notification that they get from xMatters is when it pages them to ask them about joining a bridge for a major incident.

What is most valuable?

The most valuable feature is the ability to page people and get them on a call as fast as possible. 

The integrations with other tools, such as ServiceNow and Microsoft Teams, really help a lot to reduce the steps needed by incident managers to do their job.

On-call schedules are very easy and user-friendly; they are not difficult to use. I have taught a couple of people how to do them, and they were able to follow quickly. Its on-call schedule and interface are probably a lot friendlier than ServiceNow. We don't really use on-call schedules a lot, except for incident managers. Everybody else is 24/7. 

When I integrated xMatters and ServiceNow, I now know which messages were sent just by looking at the logs in a ticket. I know who accepted or declined the messages. So, these logs are really helpful.

What needs improvement?

It took me awhile to get used to whatever was available in the interface. The interface from two years ago was a bit more confusing when looking at where you should go. Once I got the hang of it and found where I needed to go, it was easier than I thought. The only limitations have been when I was looking for a specific integration that would allow me to integrate with ServiceNow and Microsoft Teams without going through multiple channels, e.g., just click a button in ServiceNow and the rest will be done. That is the part where I really needed help. However, everything else is easy and straightforward, such as configuring what the alarms would look like and configuring how to send a message without coding.

I haven't had the chance to play around with the new workflows. So, when I attended their roadshows and a couple of meetings about it, I didn't really pick it up that quickly. It sounded a bit more complicated my level of skill, since I am not a developer. Therefore, I still needed to sit down and understand how it works. Right now, we really don't have a business case to use it yet. 

For how long have I used the solution?

I started using xMatters somewhere around 2017 or 2018 with my previous account. I am a consultant for this company, and we are a third-party managed service. The company outsources their services to us. Before my current project, I was with another account where we also implemented xMatters.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

I have not had any complaints since we have been using this. I haven't heard any really bad feedback. If we did receive bad feedback, it is really more about people complaining that xMatters keeps calling them, but that is the way I configured it. If there is a major incident, until you pick up, then it will keep calling you. So, if they are annoyed with the amount of time it calls them, then that is not xMatters' problem. 

I have only heard a couple of complaints about not receiving alarms. That was once or twice in the two years that I have been using it. They didn't get a notification once or twice. Unfortunately, I wasn't able to get in touch with xMatters at that time, but it wasn't really a big deal so I just let it slip away.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

The most maintenance, which I have been doing, has been adding and removing users. This could be solved if they had enough licenses, so when we add them to ServiceNow, they would automatically be assigned an xMatters license.

Adding users is five minutes per user, but we don't really have a lot of users in the environment. We have 200-something from time to time. We only give licenses to team leads, managers, directors, vice presidents, and C-level executives. It is not like we have a lot of users who come in and go all the time. Once in a while, they tell me somebody has left and ask me to remove their license. That does not take a lot of time.

How are customer service and support?

The support has been excellent. They are very knowledgeable and approachable. I work with a person who was kind enough to help me write the code for the requirements that we were looking for. That really helped us a lot and took our xMatters integration to the next level.

How would you rate customer service and support?

Positive

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

This is the first solution of this type that we have used.

How was the initial setup?

I had the privilege of at least playing around with the tool before I joined this account. With my previous account, when they started using it, I knew the very basics of what it was and what it was for. However, being the admin and configuring everything, that was a first. For a while, I had to really dig deep into using the dev environment and looking at the fields, e.g., what they are. 

I have a knack for figuring things out myself, though It took awhile, but I attended a couple of training courses and sessions also with xMatters last year. That really helped a lot. There were things that I didn't realize were there, and those were the things that helped make it what it is today.

What about the implementation team?

Integrating it with ServiceNow was a bit more difficult than I thought since I personally don't have a developer background. So, I relied on mostly common sense to figure it out, but my common sense could only take me up to a certain point. I then had to reach out to somebody from xMatters to help me, and he did all the coding for us. 

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

I am not really privy to how much my client is paying for this service. They just tell me the number of licenses that they have. Every time that I say, "I need extra licenses to make sure that all Level 1 and 2s have their own xMatters account," they keep telling me that it is too expensive. If the only purpose is to call people, it doesn't justify the cost of paying more than the number of licenses that they already have. 

This limits my ability to implement other things that I had hoped could have been implemented, like the notifications. For example, I could have used notifications to inform people that there is a P1 or P2 assigned to them. However, because of the limitations and licenses, we could not. 

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

We explored the ability of ServiceNow to page people. Though, we didn't really have an opportunity to deep dive into that because somebody decided to use xMatters instead.

What other advice do I have?

The solution is excellent. I would rate xMatters as nine (out of 10). The workflow configuration is not really friendly for people, like me, who are not developers. Everything else is great.

If you really want to reduce your mean time for restoring a service during a major incident, xMatters would definitely be the right tool. I haven't encountered another tool, not even ServiceNow, that starts calling people during a major incident. For this purpose, it is definitely very helpful. 

At the end of the day, our goal is to keep environments 99.9% available to customers. The only way to achieve that is to reduce the mean time to restore a service whenever there is a major incident. 

Definitely give xMatters a shot and some time. It can look a bit complicated, but you can attend their roadshows and free training, offered during the pandemic. That helped us a lot, because there are things in the tool that you will find out were there that you never thought were there in the first place.

Disclosure: IT Central Station contacted the reviewer to collect the review and to validate authenticity. The reviewer was referred by the vendor, but the review is not subject to editing or approval by the vendor.
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Rajvir Bhambra
Major Incident Support Manager at Telefónica
Real User
Top 20
Good logging capability, integrates well, supported on multiple platforms, and is always available

Pros and Cons

  • "The Flow Designer is quite valuable, as you can set up integrations and flows without necessarily needing to know about code."
  • "The user interface could be more intuitive. Once you know what you're doing, you're fine. However, if you don't know where to start then it can be a bit difficult to figure out how to make it work and how it will function together with different tools in the Flow Designer."

What is our primary use case?

Our primary use case for xMatters is instant communications and stakeholder engagement. We send out instant communications whenever we have a major incident within the company. In addition to situations like this, we use xMatters when we have other high-priority matters and we need to engage the right people as quickly as possible.

How has it helped my organization?

We have integrated xMatters with other tools such as Workplace, Power Automate, and Microsoft Teams. It can be used to interact with other webhook endpoint URLs, as well. The Flow Designer is what we have built most of our integrations from, and once you know how to use it, creating integrations is very clear and obvious. When you are getting started, however, it can be a bit daunting and is not as clear as it could be.

There are plenty of tools that xMatters integrates with and they are always adding to that list. Also, if there isn't a pre-made integration available for a tool then you can customize and create your own. This is something that is very helpful.

xMatters has helped to automate our incident notification process, and they have provided us support with doing so. One example had to do with a major incident process that we have set up. Previously, it was a two-step process where our major incident management team would engage stakeholders to bring them onto a conference bridge. It was a two-step process to ensure that the major incident manager was available for the bridge and there wasn't an issue that the major incident manager was facing. With the help of our customer success manager at xMatters, that process was streamlined in such a way that the same level of customer security and two-step verification could still take place, but it was done with less effort needed on the major incident manager side. It still has the same output and meets the same criteria, but with less effort needed from the major incident managers to do it.

The workflows in xMatters have helped us to address issues proactively from the perspective of stakeholder management. It ensures that the right people are aware and advised of issues in the company. It also helps with managing our licenses, which has been very helpful.

Another benefit to using xMatters is the fact that it's always available, regardless of device. If we were to have an issue that meant I could not use my laptop, I can then go and use the app on my phone, or another approved device to be able to access xMatters. That's really helpful for me. It's not just the availability but also that it's usable on so many different platforms. I'm not restricted. This has come in handy in the past when I haven't been able to use my laptop to send out communication and I've had to use an iPad or a tablet.

What is most valuable?

The Flow Designer is quite valuable, as you can set up integrations and flows without necessarily needing to know about code.

The messaging solutions that are in place give us the ability to send out messages and communicate to stakeholders from the tool.

One of the main features that we use is the on-call escalations. The escalations feature works well for us if we are trying to engage the stakeholder and they are unavailable for whatever reason. It allows us to contact an appropriate representative from the area that we're trying to contact and bring them on to engage them. The escalations are flexible and customizable as well.

I use xMatters logs and I find that its logging capability is very accurate and useful. From my experience, it's been very helpful in diagnosing and troubleshooting issues and helping to identify whether the fault of an issue is something that I've set up in xMatters, or it's an external system that it's connected to. By looking at the logs, I can tell whether xMatters has fulfilled its operations properly and whether it's an issue within the tool or outside. Overall, I'm quite happy with the logging functionality.

We use the xMatters REST API for inbound integration, and it has been useful. From the API URL, we are able to trigger events from xMatters and streamline our processes for engaging stakeholders. It works well for us.

We have the ability to extend the functionality of the workflows using code, and this is something that I have done for some processes. For example, we post our instant communications onto a third-party platform, and xMatters will retrieve the details of those communications. It will then get a list of all of the users that we're trying to contact in the target audience and send them each a personalized message on that third-party platform, directly to them, of the communications that are sent out using the bot on that platform. That was all done through coding and it works in the background without anybody having to worry about it.

The fact that xMatters provides targeted content-rich notifications has helped to reduce response times because stakeholders are given details of what the incident is once they are contacted. Potentially, there are 20 to 30 people that can be contacted, and by having this process in place, we're able to contact vast numbers of people very quickly. The process very succinctly gives them the details of what the incident is, and it will call out the individual and bring them onto a conference bridge. This has worked well for us and it really helps us with engaging stakeholders.

What needs improvement?

The user interface could be more intuitive. Once you know what you're doing, you're fine. However, if you don't know where to start then it can be a bit difficult to figure out how to make it work and how it will function together with different tools in the Flow Designer.

When you are not familiar with integrations and you're starting fresh, looking for where to begin, it is a bit daunting and not as clear as it could be.

I would like to see more information available in the reporting, including additional metrics.

For how long have I used the solution?

I have been using xMatters IT Management for nearly four years. I began using it when I joined my current company.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

This is a very stable and reliable product.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

Scalability has not been an issue for us. If we target a small audience, it works, and if we target a large audience, it works. if we need it to interact with multiple different endpoints, it will do that as well. Overall, the scalability is quite good.

We have approximately 1,500 licenses.

How are customer service and support?

The customer success managers have helped us to solve problems.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

I have not used another similar solution.

What about the implementation team?

There is no system maintenance to do, although we perform user maintenance. This is a case of developing and introducing opportunities for improvement internally, either to work with the flows and processes we've got set up, just to streamline them, or improve and better the output. This is something that we spend perhaps a few days a week on. I do the majority of work on the maintenance. Other people may give it a light touch but don't work with it to the extent that I do.

As the major Incident Support Manager, I deal with major incidents when they arise. In addition to that, I work on and develop different opportunities for improvement within MIM processes and tools.

What was our ROI?

As a company, we have seen a return on investment, but that was before I joined.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

The pricing and licensing are okay. I wish that the user licenses were cheaper but the stakeholder licenses are at a reasonable cost.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

Since implementing xMatters, we have evaluated other solutions. However, it does the job for us very well and there wasn't a need to move away from it. The main one that we looked at was PagerDuty.

Both of these are very similar tools and they both do a good job. From our perspective, we have stayed with xMatters because it already works.

What other advice do I have?

We do not use xMatters to send incident notifications, such as an alert when there is a major incident. Our primary uses are stakeholder communications and the engagement of stakeholders. We don't use the feature that allows it to act as a middleman that will receive information from monitoring tools, then pass it on to us.

My advice for anybody who is looking at xMatters is that if you're looking to send out targeted communications to end-users, whether it's a few or many, and you're trying to be very specific in your workflows, consider xMatters. It's capable of communicating on multiple platforms and in multiple ways. Also, if there is anything that you're stuck on then you can look through the forums or reach out to xMatters for help and see if they can provide you with assistance to get things working.

Overall, it's a very capable tool and if you keep working at it, it will do what you need it to do.

I would rate this solution a nine out of ten.

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

Public Cloud
Disclosure: IT Central Station contacted the reviewer to collect the review and to validate authenticity. The reviewer was referred by the vendor, but the review is not subject to editing or approval by the vendor.
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