Anyone who hasn’t been living under a rock knows about DevOps now. In a nutshell, DevOps is a Software Development philosophy centered on agility, automation, and collaboration within development and operations teams.
The DevOps market is expected to grow from $3.42 billion in 2018 to $10.31 billion in 2023 at a CAGR of 24.7 percent, suggest Markets and Markets.
DevOps gives a modern twist to Software Development, which traditionally happened in silos. IT and development teams worked independently with their teams and set of processes. This separation created an environment of competition instead of collaboration, leading to inefficient processes and delays in production.
The goal of DevOps is to eliminate this distinction between the two core development teams. DevOps attempts to remove inefficiencies in the software development process by aligning the strategy of the teams and creating more seamless processes for faster time to market.
To understand how DevOps improves upon many software factors, we need to look at its process flow.
The DevOps Process Flow
While DevOps is a practical methodology, it also leads to a fundamental change in an organization’s culture and the mindset of its people. DevOps stands firm on a few fundamental principles:
- Automation – Since DevOps promotes a culture of continuous improvement with faster releases, organizations need to eliminate manual execution of trivial tasks that hog up critical employee hours. This is where automation plays a role. DevOps encourages automation not only in the software development process but in the entire infrastructure by building container-based cloud platforms that allow builds to be versioned and updated.
- Agile Planning – Instead of the traditional approaches to Project Management, DevOps supports Agile planning, which organizes work in short iterations and increases the number of releases. Agile planning increases flexibility and room for pivots by allowing teams to have only high-level objectives outlined while having a detailed plan for the next two iterations in advance.
- Iterations – Iterations are an essential concept in DevOps where teams make quick revisions to code and allow flexibility in changing the course where needed. DevOps, in itself, is an iterative method that promotes continuously making small increments in a software product to encourage transparency in the process and minimize errors at the end of the development cycle.
- Self-Service – Self-service DevOps enables developers to deploy apps and software on demand all by themselves as the IT team has done its part of the job beforehand. This way, DevOps ensures there are no hiccups and delays in product delivery, achieving a state of continuous delivery.
- Continuous Improvement – In the light of changing circumstances, DevOps philosophy enables teams to adapt to customer needs, new technologies, or changes in regulatory compliances. To minimize waste and optimize cost and speed of development, DevOps strongly recommends continuous improvement throughout iterations.
- Collaboration – The DevOps practice is not based on working in silos. Far from it. It encourages IT and development teams to work in conjunction, dissolving any pre-existing boundaries within the two departments. For this reason alone, DevOps can be seen as a cultural shift rather than a new practice for organizations.
- Continuous Testing – This principle focuses on achieving continuous improvement and quality of products. The constant testing process helps find gaps in product quality and interactively fix them, so they don’t mount upon one another at the end of development.
Besides these core principles, DevOps work on three core practices:
- Continuous Integration (CI) – CI aims at integrating the work of individual developers into a central code repository frequently and early on in the development process. When practiced several times a day, continuous integration ensures early detection of integration bugs and a better quality of the product.
- Continuous Delivery (CD) – CD aims to automate the software delivery process to enable assured and comfortable deployments into production at any time. Businesses can use an automatic or manual trigger to release bug-free code into production frequently.
- Continuous Deployment – Continuous integration and delivery, when combined, support the constant deployment of project code at the customer’s end.
The Importance of Product Definitions
Of course, DevOps can be termed as successful only when the product is properly defined. A well-defined product definition ensures that all stakeholders are on the same page with respect to the product requirements, features, and manifestation.
At a broad level, product definition involves
- Identification of the problems that the product should solve, the exact user/ customer profile, and what would the product success look like
- Building the business case, market necessities, use cases, and the overall vision for the product
- Defining a well-characterized UI/UX to create a frictionless and pleasant product
When Continuous Product Definition Meets DevOps
Continuous, frequent, and optimized Product Definition in DevOps leads to several benefits, such as:
- Significant increase in the number of quality product releases combined with continuous integration and delivery.
- Improved confidence in the team as there is less room for errors and teams collaborate on a mature level to deliver the end product.
- Reduction in manual labor with implementation automation. Menial tasks are, therefore, left to automation while employees focus on delivering product versions to the customer.
- Minimized risk of errors or failure in production as teams implement continuous testing to eliminate any bugs and rapidly deploy bug-free code to production.
- Faster feedback incorporation as any feedback from the customer leading to higher customer satisfaction.
- More room for innovation as teams collaborate and look at how the next iteration can be made better while the product definition is being constantly validated.
- Faster time to market of the right products leading to strong competitive advantage.
- Higher ROI as teams don’t spend hours working on unnecessary features, they test often, and minimize wastage of code when nearing deployment.
In 2018, 72 percent of companies had already adopted DevOps in some form or the other; 17% of them have fully embraced the technology.
DevOps is getting more and more popular and continuous product definition is accentuating its effect on the delivery cycles and development methodologies of many companies.
At Pratiti Technologies, we help businesses in transforming their development cycles with DevOps and continuous product definition. We offer an array of services and tools to ensure you follow the right DevOps roadmap, strategy, and measure the performance of your development lifecycle to see improved ROI.
Talk to us about our DevOps services today!
After successful 5 years stint in a corporate role, Nitin is back to what he enjoys most – conceptualizing new software solutions to solve business problems. Nitin is postgraduate from IIT, Mumbai, India and in his 19 years of career, has played key roles in building a desktop as well as enterprise solutions right from idealization to launch which are adopted by many Fortune 500 companies. As a Founder member of Pratiti Technologies, he is committed to applying his management learning as well as the passion for building new solutions to realize your innovation with certainty.