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Why DevOps is crucial for your Enterprise IT

DevOps
Image credit: Shutterstock (Image credit: Image credit: Shutterstock)
About the author

John Rakowski is a Market Specialist for Application Performance Management and Analytics at AppDynamics

John Rakowski, Market Specialist for Application Performance Management and Analytics at AppDynamics discusses DevOps methodology and how it is enabling digital transformation.

DevOps is the transformation of the IT operating model. There are numerous definitions that describe DevOps, but it’s ultimately about IT moving faster in terms of driving positive technology innovation, while promoting better collaboration between development, operations and business stakeholders, in order to ensure quality. 

DevOps promotes agility and continuous delivery, ensuring that your business can release new digital services and features at a speed that meets your customers’ needs, with each release meeting their expectations.

DevOps as a culture has been popularized by the ‘always on’ consumer mentality. Businesses need to develop applications and digital services faster than ever before to meet the needs of increasingly digitally-savvy consumers. To do this, they need to ensure collaboration between their development, IT operations and business stakeholder teams.

How has the DevOps methodology revolutionized enterprise IT?

The debate for enterprises today is no longer “should we adopt DevOps?”, but rather “how do we adopt DevOps?”. 

When planning new software projects or maintaining existing deployments, DevOps helps organisations create stronger ties between all stakeholders involved in the development lifecycle. It’s no surprise therefore that DevOps has gained popularity in businesses, big and small.

DevOps has grown from a theory or mindset to a culture that is the staple for successful modern, digital enterprises. It has a ripple effect on the whole organisation - businesses which have implemented and collaborated have reaped the rewards. 

That said, it’s still a fairly modern principle, and has a long way to go. Since it’s about transformation, changing the way people work, it could be argued that DevOps adoption never ends, and that the journey for one enterprise will almost always be different from that of another.

It’s important to note that DevOps is not only about transforming to a culture of collaboration between development and IT operations, but also about collaboration with security, testing teams and with the wider business. It’s why we have also seen terminology such as DevSecOps and BizDevOps appear. 

Central to a culture of collaboration is making sure that teams have the right, frictionless visibility into application, associated technology and business metrics, so that fact-based insights can influence plans to improve software and technology strategies. Foreseeing issues before they arise will likely be a game-changer for organisations over the next 12 months.

How has it helped enable digital transformation in enterprises?

It’s no secret that every industry is going through digital transformation. To survive, organisations must change the way they operate in order to meet the demands of today’s digitally savvy customers.

Applications are the key differentiator between those who succeed and those who will fall short. Every successful application needs a successful strategy. For modern web, mobile applications and IoT services, enterprises look to DevOps.

‘Always on’ consumers demand products and services that fit their lifestyles. User experience needs to be on point and downtime is unacceptable. DevOps has allowed enterprises to embrace continuous deployment and integration - releasing high-quality consumer-facing and business critical digital services to help the business grow. 

DevOps is crucial within an organisation, as it removes issues traditionally linked with working in silos. Collaborative working and visibility ensures technology and applications are fit for purpose, and takes into consideration the business’ needs. It’s this collaboration and continuous development and improvement that’s critical for digital transformation.

Can DevOps thinking now spread out to the other departments touched by software development?

DevOps enables collaboration by fostering a “fail forward, fail fast” culture. DevOps, in this sense, is not just about the tools or processes, it’s about a fundamental change in culture which can proliferate to other departments within an enterprise. 

DevOps certainly has a trickle-down effect when done right. When a department or business unit sees the success of embracing DevOps and the fact that it’s less about technology and more about ensuring better collaboration in order to move fast, they want to try it. That said, it’s not a ‘one size fits all’ approach and different teams have to first answer, “What does DevOps success mean to me?” 

All parts of a business now run off software, so having DevOps teams across the business is crucial. 

What’s next for DevOps - how will this methodology continue to evolve in the coming years?

Machine Learning and AI will transform DevOps - AIOps will become part of successful DevOps adoption. AIOps is a mindset that embraces automation based on machine-learned insights about applications and the associated technology stack, to help IT move faster. 

AI will increasingly be used to identify potential challenges within the application environment - challenges that might be technical or business related - and automate responses immediately. This will help companies avoid revenue-impacting outages which jeopardise the customer experience, the business, and the brand.

This added layer of visibility will give enterprises a competitive advantage - identifying problems before they arise and allowing teams to mitigate risks.

John Rakowski is a Market Specialist for Application Performance Management and Analytics at AppDynamics