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NatWest app suffers another outage, doesn't learn from past mistakes

With the news that RBS and NatWest customers were left in limbo as the banks' mobile apps suffered outages over the weekend, Michael Allen, Solutions VP at Dynatrace offered the following comment:

“Today’s customers expect 24/7 availability, and failure to meet these expectations results in very public condemnation - as we can see from the flurry of angry Tweets from RBS and NatWest customers at the moment.

"Unfortunately, as we’ve seen from the frequency with which this type of outage is occurring, maintaining a flawless digital customer experience is becoming more and more difficult; especially in the banking industry. The problem is that many of the underlying systems in the financial services sector are based on aging, 20-plus years old architectures that weren’t originally designed to integrate with the new technologies that have become the norm today.

“When routine updates are rolled out on services such as mobile banking applications, it can cause unforeseen problems, as appears to have been the case here. Due to the complexities that are inherent in unravelling the root-cause of these problems, it can take hours, or even days before IT teams are able to rectify the situation.

"Before these problems become a thing of the past, businesses need to realise that digital business performance is no longer the sole concern of the IT department; it has ramifications across the entire organisation and should be a priority for everyone - from the CEO right down to the IT manager.

"We also need to see a move towards continuous delivery, where digital services are developed more closely in line with the user needs and updates are less likely to cause major disruption.”