How to Use DevOps to the Advantage of Your Business2022-08-03 09:28:51
The outbreak of the pandemic has accelerated cloud adoption, also unleashing the growth of DevOps. IDC predicts that its market will grow by the end of 2022 from $2.9 to $8 billion.
Puppet’s report found that almost 85% of decision-makers have used DevOps tools in their organisations. According to the study, the framework has evolved to the point that “many of the teams that are ‘doing DevOps’ well don’t even talk about DevOps anymore—it’s simply how they work.”
A growing number of companies are taking up cloud automation. However, over 60% of them get stuck mid-way on their DevOps journey despite high levels of automation.
This situation clearly proves that to succeed with DevOps, companies need much more than just tools – and I’ll get to that in this text. But let’s start with some other central questions first.
What DevOps means
Although the word ‘DevOps’ combines ‘development’ with ‘operations’, it embraces ideas far wider than those two terms. Depending on the context, the concept can also include security, work culture, data analytics, and more.
In a nutshell, it’s an approach aimed at increasing business value and responsiveness through fast and iterative IT service delivery. Developers work closely with IT operations to speed up software tests and releases—without compromising reliability.
DevOps accelerates the processes of building a new idea and bringing it to production where it can provide value to the user. The faster it happens, the easier it becomes to validate ideas and continue working in regular iterations.
If it sounds similar to Agile principles, it’s because it is. Developing modern applications requires different processes than past approaches – and DevOps helps implement a continuous integration and deployment pipeline (CI/CD).
As a result, you can deliver software more frequently while validating its quality with minimal human intervention.
What are the main business benefits of DevOps?
This acceleration is essential in today’s oversaturated market. Commoditisation has never been faster, and customer expectations have never been higher.
DevOps makes it easier for tech teams to catch up with the pace set by the business. It’s a way for a company to deliver products faster, improve operational efficiency, and innovate.
In turn, these changes translate into more regular releases. According to Google State of DevOps 2021, the most advanced DevOps performers have almost 1000 times more frequent code deployments than their poor-performing colleagues. Also, their lead time from commit to deploy is 6570 times faster (yes, you got that number right!).
More frequent releases leave more space and opportunities for feedback from business users. This reinforced focus on the customer and the value of software impacts your bottom line and unlocks further growth, regardless of the industry you’re in.
How else does it improve your operations?
But DevOps benefits stretch far beyond the software-revenue relationship.
It also improves the cooperation between teams responsible for the product and boosts their morale. Thanks to automating and structuring processes, they get repetitive tasks out of the way and gain space for what matters most.
Moreover, reducing manual deployments leaves less room for error and adds to your company’s overall security posture. The DevOps framework automates and integrates numerous security tasks from the start, turning them into a shared responsibility of all teams involved in the process.
How to get it right – DevOps best practices
The advantages of DevOps are clear, so how do you introduce it?
It asks for more than just tools and automation – so here are some ingredients for your team’s success with DevOps.
1. Promote the culture of agile development
Now a household name in the IT world, Agile is an iterative, incremental approach to project management. Agile teams deliver work in smaller parts instead of a single massive release. They continuously evaluate all plans and requirements, dynamically responding to feedback and pivoting as necessary – and that’s what DevOps is about, too.
2. Choose the right tools and automate processes strategically
Numerous tools and technologies can automate different parts of your development cycle, from writing and merging code to tests, deployment, and maintenance. Do you need them all? Certainly not. Pick and prioritise only the tools, technologies, and solutions that add real value to your operations.
3. Monitor the DevOps pipeline
Automation improves the speed of development significantly. However, if there is a failure in the automated process – e.g., a broken build or a failed test – its consequences may cause delays. Therefore, having a monitoring system in place is a must if you want to identify potential failures and deficiencies in time.
4. Gather and use feedback continuously
Continuous feedback means that teams have all the information they need to do their job. For example, in software delivery environments, they get alerts about pipeline failures, performance deficiencies, or bugs as soon as possible. Continuous feedback is one of the DevOps elements that enable teams to optimise for speed and quality.
5. Adapt your organisational culture
DevOps requires collaboration, transparency, and trust. Most companies need to work on ingraining and reinforcing these qualities in their work cultures and eliminating the silos in which separate teams tend to work. For DevOps to succeed, all parties involved in the process must take ownership of the project, collaborate, and communicate openly.
6. Enlist professional DevOps support
Building a DevOps team is a huge step forward, but it can also be challenging. Luckily, you don’t have to walk it alone. External DevOps experts can prepare the cloud infrastructure and CI/CD processes for your software development efforts. They can also help you mitigate risks and make the most of your new DevOps tools and processes.
If you’re looking to start DevOps processes at your company, we’re here to help. Get in touch and let’s get the ball rolling.
Pupper – The 2021 State of DevOps Report is here!