BigPanda: How This Event Correlation And Automation Platform Is Helping The Digital World Run Smoothly

By Amit Chowdhry • Jan 16, 2024

BigPanda is an Automated AIOps Platform that unifies data to revolutionize incident management. Pulse 2.0 interviewed BigPanda CEO Assaf Resnick to learn more about the company.

Assaf Resnick’s Background

Resnick kicked off his career on Wall Street, where he dipped his toes into the investment services world at Moody’s. And Resnick said:

“After a few years, I realized that I wanted to find a way to marry my passion for tech with my background in investments. That realization led me down the path as a venture capitalist at Sequoia Capital, which became a major turning point in my career. Every day at Sequoia, I was working alongside brilliant people doing amazing things, people who were full of courage and conviction. The courage and conviction of the entrepreneurs I worked with became a part of me – and it’s what inspired me to found BigPanda.”

Formation Of BigPanda

How did the idea for the company come together? Resnick shared:

“During my time at Sequoia, I had a front-row seat to the challenges facing today’s IT ecosystem. I discovered that as companies moved to the cloud, their IT Ops teams were unequipped to deal with the resulting growth in operational data.  The scale, complexity and velocity of the cloud environment were (and still are) growing at a rapid pace.  However, the tools and operating philosophies that companies were using to manage these environments had not evolved.  They were still centered around managing operations in a manual way. This left ITOps, DevOps, and SRE teams struggling with manual and reactive incident response capabilities that were ill-suited for modern IT environments. The result? Painful outages, unhappy customers, and a growing IT headcount. With the founding of BigPanda, I set out to solve this industry-wide issue.”

Core Products

What are the company’s core products and features? Resnick explained:

“BigPanda’s idea is simple: use AI & machine learning to automate manual operational tasks that are currently draining productivity. The results are transformative. With our automated solutions, companies are able to run applications in the cloud and automatically monitor for potential issues while flagging corrections and preventing outages before they can ever happen. This allows customers to proactively identify potential outages or performance issues rather than react in a manual firefighting mode when problems arise. We are empowering businesses to make sense of their operational data, identify and manage software incidents, and vastly reduce the operational costs and chaos that plague the IT industry.”

“Our Operational Intelligence & Automation empowers some of the world’s largest brands (PayPal, Kaiser Permanente, Alaska Airlines, PlayStation, and more) to keep businesses running, prevent service outages, and improve incident management to deliver extraordinary customer experiences. BigPanda was developed from start to finish with cloud computing and automation in mind, providing the best-in-industry uptime and performance. We are innovating a new category of using AI to automate operations.”

Root Cause Investigation Launch

Tell me about BigPanda’s recent root cause investigation launch. How will that launch support the way IT teams approach incident management?

BigPanda recently announced new and improved AI capabilities for its root cause analysis features, leveraging explainable AI/ML to correlate incident alerts with software and infrastructure change data. Hybrid cloud organizations encounter a constant stream of infrastructure and software changes and alerts on a daily basis, with approximately 85% of incidents resulting from changes. Legacy IT Operations tools cannot handle these challenges, as they cannot collect and analyze data from different change tools to correlate with incidents and outages.

Our AI-powered root cause investigation tools help teams quickly and accurately determine root causes, and therefore resolve incidents in less time with fewer resources. Typically, root cause analysis practices are part of an incident’s lengthy post-mortem – but BigPanda leverages AI/ML to automate this process and reveal causal relationships behind incidents with surprising speed and accuracy. By doing so, these new features enable IT teams to shorten mean-time-to-resolution (MTTR) and avoid hours of costly downtime.

Significant Milestones

What have been some of BigPanda’s most significant milestones? Resnick cited:

“We have been rapidly scaling our business and keeping up with the increasing demand for AIOps in today’s modern technology environment. We’ve supported this growth momentum by raising $337 million in funding from leading tech investors, including Sequoia, Insight, Battery, UBS, and Wells Fargo. The funding allows us to continue to innovate our best-in-class AIOps capabilities, increase the size of R&D, Product and AI development teams, and move forward with strategic acquisitions. We’re already scaling go-to-market activities, as evidenced by newly built-out sales, marketing, customer success and partnership teams, along with a growing presence in EMEA.”

“In July, BigPanda unveiled new Generative AI capabilities through its Automated Incident Analysis product – a revolutionary new Generative AI capability that provides ITOps teams with fast, accurate and consistent insights into every incident, making it possible to identify the impact and probable root cause across distributed IT systems faster and easier than previously possible. BigPanda’s Generative AI product was the first in the industry that operationalized LLM in IT operations.”

Customer Success Stories

After asking Resnick about customer success stories, he highlighted:

Two customer cases that best exemplify BigPanda’s success are the company’s work with the InternContinental Hotels Group (IHG) and Autodesk.

1.) As the owner of leading hospitality brands like Holiday Inn, Holiday Inn Express, Crowne Plaza, and Regent Hotels, IHG faced growing pains amid new challenges and operational complexities as the company scaled. IHG turned to BigPanda to reduce the internal pain of manually detecting and managing operational incidents. With BigPanda, IHG achieved 99.8% availability in 2022, the company’s best performance on record. BigPanda increased application/service availability, reduced IT complexity, minimized costs, boosted team morale, and optimized internal processes and application architectures for IHG. IHG is a showcase example of how BigPanda helps its customers operate at the forefront of their industries.

2.) Autodesk – a leader in 3D design, engineering, and entertainment software – faced IT struggles as the company’s IT Ops teams faced an average of 100,00 monthly application alerts across 25 monitoring tools. Autodesk’s ServiceNow tickets lacked critical context to help responders act quickly on incidents – which increased the mean time to resolve (MTTR). To address these challenges and accelerate their ITOps, Autodesk turned to BigPanda’s Intelligence and Automation platform – which equipped the Autodesk IT teams with greatly enhanced insights into the issues underlying all the events, improving their ticketing processes and driving greater operational efficiency. BigPanda helped Autodesk drive a significant 69% reduction in incidents while improving MTTR by 85%, helping the team detect data center-wide anomalies with logical and time-based correlation patterns.

Differentiation From The Competition

What differentiates the company from its competition? Resnick affirmed:

At BigPanda, we’re dedicated to keeping the digital world running smoothly. There are three key reasons for why BigPanda stands apart from the rest:

1.) BigPanda is the only platform that is open and agnostic to every other tool & data set in the ecosystem. We are the Switzerland of this industry. This enables us to leverage all the data & tools that our customers already use so that they can quickly gain insights & automation without having to change anything else.

2.) BigPanda has an unparalleled ability to transform fragmented and fast-moving operational data into unified & comprehensive data. This is important because AI is only as good as the data you feed it. High-quality data is a required input in order for AI to generate high-quality insights & automation. That is an area where BigPanda really shines.

3.) BigPanda is the only platform with AI that is explainable and controllable for human operators. Other solutions utilize “black box” AI, that does not allow Ops teams to understand or influence the AI’s logic. BigPanda’s “Open Box” approach makes the AI logic fully transparent, understandable & controllable, leading to higher trust and adoption.

And the proof is in the pudding: recently, research company Forrester published a report on Process-Centric AI for ITOps – ranking BigPanda as a leader in ITOps strategy and noting BigPanda’s differentiators include the platform’s unified visibility, automation, and scalability and analytics offerings.

Leveraging AI

AI’s a hot topic right now. How is BigPanda leveraging AI in an applicable way for enterprises? Resnick noted:

BigPanda uses AI to scale the human capacity to manage the overwhelming volume of IT alerts that impact IT teams and hamper productivity.

BigPanda leverages “Open Box AI” that is explainable and controllable for human operators. Other solutions utilize “black box” AI, that does not allow Ops teams to understand or influence the AI’s logic.  BigPanda’s “Open Box” approach makes the AI logic fully transparent, understandable & controllable, leading to higher trust and adoption.

BigPanda’s recently launched Automated Incident Analysis feature employs generative AI to erase the extra noise and uses enriched data to support ITOps teams. IT staff are able to quickly and automatically deliver clear incident descriptions, estimate incident impact, and suggest root causes faster than ever. At BigPanda, we’re dedicated to unlocking the long-elusive promise of AIOps by enabling a future with faster incident resolution and without stressful outages.

Future Company Goals

What are some of the company’s future goals? Resnick concluded:

“At BigPanda, we’re dedicated to moving AIOps from a reactive process to a proactive process. We believe that Operation teams must replace manual workflows with fully automated operations to keep up with the growing scale and complexity of modern infrastructure & software. BigPanda’s goal is to transform incident management from manual, reactive & unscalable ticket response to fully automated operations that require No Tickets.”