DevOps has made its presence felt in the industry for ten years now. Almost everyone has heard about the term and a lot of professionals have experienced the benefit of this approach to software development. A 2017 report concluded that high performing companies that embraced the DevOps approach have witnessed 200 times more frequent deploys and 24 times faster recovery times.
Enterprises have embraced DevOps not just as an agile-based methodology but as the paramount approach to software delivery. Adoption rates increased exponentially between 2015-16 as per DevOps.com. In 2015, only 66% were adopting DevOps which went up to 74% in the next year. Traditional ways of developing software had to be replaced with DevOps to deliver faster and better products. Let’s delve deeper into DevOps and it’s business benefits.
What is DevOps?
As the name suggests, DevOps is a combination of the two major terms in software development – “Development” and “Operations”. DevOps is the agile methodology in which the development and IT operations teams work and collaborate together instead of the traditional way of having separate silos. There’s a lot of emphasis on automating the processes and interfaces between the software development and IT teams.
More than an approach to software development, DevOps promotes a culture of communication and collaboration that leads to faster and more seamless delivery of software products. In the traditional environment, the developer and the IT system administrator worked in functional silos which led to delayed communication, process lags and ultimately tainted user experience.
Consider the old scenario. The developer would write code for new products, features, and upgrades which would basically be fit to be run in the development environment. However, he would have to wait sometimes for weeks so that his work is placed in production. Since the code is written for the development environment, it is also susceptible to more errors and bugs.
On the other hand, the IT systems administrator is required to maintain the uptime of the production environment so that users can have a smooth experience. Since the company is launching new products and features on a regular basis, it becomes difficult for the operations team to ensure smooth deployment because of the changing needs. Ops is also responsible for diagnosing any bugs or errors in the new code which is deployed. In such a scenario, the Development and Operations teams feel isolated struggling with their own problems and leading to delays and unforeseen situations.
This is where DevOps steps in bringing in much more than breaking silos. What sets DevOps apart is the practice of automation. “Automate everything” is the mantra of DevOps! Automation is spread out to all stages including code generation, testing, workflows, and infrastructure. The entire DevOps process involving continuous integration, continuous testing, and continuous deployment is automated along with live monitoring of application performance.
How businesses are going the DevOps way?
Some of the best businesses we know of in the digital era have embraced DevOps. Amazon, Netflix, and Facebook have become household names, for instance, and are classic examples of businesses that have gone the DevOps way. Before they adopted the DevOps way, Amazon would waste 40% of server capacity as there was no way of dynamically scaling up or down as per the requirements.
However, Amazon got rid of this problem as they embraced the Amazon Web Services (AWS) cloud. This not only helps them save up server costs but also adopt a continuous deployment process. As Amazon switched to AWS, within a year engineers were able to deploy code every 11.7 seconds.
However, Netflix has taken DevOps to a whole new level. Theirs is a widely-discussed case study wherein automation has played a key role in helping them provide a consistent and failure-proof experience to Netflix customers. And guess how they achieve this feat? By automating failure.
Netflix’s entire system has been hosted on Amazon Web Services. To ensure that all components of the system coordinate properly for a seamless experience, Netflix found a unique way of ensuring the robustness of the system. They created a script famously referred to as the Chaos Monkey. Once it is run, it disables server instances causing a chaotic scenario. As a result, Netflix developers are constantly exposed to unforeseen situations of disruptions, outages, and vulnerabilities.
Despite this, we have never ever come across the Netflix website being down or out of order. By automating this process of forcefully inducing failures, Netflix adopts DevOps as developers constantly test the application under unexpected circumstances to keep it up and running at all times thus making it extremely robust and resilient.
The Business Benefits of DevOps:
Deliver faster and have greater business agility by implementing DevOps
1. Faster delivery and error resolution
DevOps operates on a model of collaboration and communications between the “Dev” and “Ops” teams and thus helps resolve issues and pain points in a better, faster and seamless way thus resulting in faster release cycles. Since automation is a key aspect of DevOps, testing and review cycles become more efficient that ensure faster release to the production environment.
Even the process of resolving issues becomes faster. Because of transparency in communication and the absence of silos, bugs, errors, and failures can be resolved quickly and in a more efficient way.
2. Cultural shift
A cultural shift is probably the best and the biggest benefit of DevOps. All sophisticated tools and automation will be useless if there is a lack of collaboration between the Development and IT operations teams. If they remain focused on their individual goals instead of shared goals, then that will give rise to blame games rather than collectively taking responsibility for problems.
On the other hand, when both teams focus on shared goals, they can innovate and experiment together and come up with better solutions. This is inevitable when the focus shifts to the product or project-based teams rather than functional teams and this is made possible in the DevOps model.
3. The Automation advantage
Automation is what sets DevOps apart. It helps cut down on unnecessary manual work especially for repeatable processes. Automation is extremely important as it helps achieve the primary principles of DevOps – continuous build, continuous integration, continuous delivery, and continuous testing. The culture of collaboration and communication makes this possible.
4. Reduced rework
Since building, testing and deploying are happening in a continuous cycle, it greatly reduces the instance where reworking of the software is necessary. If you consider how much time, effort and money go into fixing errors late in the software delivery cycle, this is an immense benefit. Bugs and errors can be found early on and the software quality improves significantly even with less effort. This frees up space so that you can focus more on delivering value to your customers.
5. Scalability and reliability
Systems build under a DevOps model are more resilient as they undergo continuous testing even when changes are implemented. Since automation and consistency are key parts of DevOps, scalability issues can be easily taken care of as teams can adapt quickly when system requirements change or become more complex.
Turn to Knoldus to automate your SDLC with DevOps
Quick feedback, flawless & faster deliveries and fulfilling dynamic customer requirements are no longer fancy words. They are an absolute necessity if organizations need to survive the competition. By enabling faster feedback in testing and integration, developers can find problems sooner and can react quickly for seamless customer experience. DevOps strategies can go a long way in accelerating the software development life cycle (SDLC), enhancing collaboration and deliver better quality software products. Knoldus will help you do just that by enabling DevOps management strategies to increase your ROI and operational efficiency. Book a meeting or drop us a message here or at firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll help you get started.