2021: Autonomous Cloud Operations, Agile App Security, Customer-First Approach Will Drive Second Wave in Digital Transformation
2021 brings a renewed need to streamline operations by integrating application security into DevSecOps and accelerated adoption of autonomous cloud operations.
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The pandemic did not create the need for digital transformation, but it has accelerated it dramatically. Some organizations’ capacity for digital services was, to put it simply, unprepared for the volume of new users. Other organizations were positioned better to adapt quickly because they invested in capabilities such as AI-assistance and continuous automation beforehand.
Last year’s increased demand for digital services and the urgency to adapt quickly to users’ needs will precipitate a rise this year in user experience-driven digital transformations, a renewed need to streamline operations by integrating application security into DevSecOps, and accelerated adoption of autonomous cloud operations.
A Second Wave of Transformations Driven by User Experience
Just implementing cloud-native applications and infrastructure is not enough to achieve digital transformation objectives. Organizations need a customer-first approach to ensure their digital solutions work for their users. This will spur a second wave of digital transformation.
Taking a customer-first approach requires deep, real-time visibility into users’ digital experience. Teams need to be able to take an outside-in approach to digital experience management. They need to ensure every application is available, functional, fast, and efficient across every channel—mobile, web, IoT, and APIs. This will depend on synthesizing application performance data, real-user behavior, and synthetic monitoring with deeper experience insights to pinpoint user-impacting issues and understand the precise effect on business KPIs.
Prioritizing Application Security and DevSecOps Integration
DevOps agile processes and open-source integration have become common and are helping organizations accelerate digital transformation. However, organizations continue to be strained by processes that place responsibility on developers to deliver innovation and ensure code doesn’t expose exploitable vulnerabilities. Despite having invested in multiple tools to manage application vulnerabilities, organizations continue to have blind spots and uncertainty about exposure and their impact on cloud-native applications. Even the most common and well-documented vulnerabilities can remain undetected and open for hackers to exploit.
CIOs and CISOs need continuous and automatic runtime risk analysis and impact assessment of applications, libraries, and code to ensure no vulnerabilities are exposed in their production and pre-production environments. We’ll see organizations invest in all-in-one observability platforms that integrate seamlessly with existing and emerging DevSecOps processes, ensuring they can trust their applications are secure without sacrificing innovation.
Massive Growth in Autonomous, Self-Healing Cloud Operations
IT leaders continue to be battered by the complexity created by cloud-native applications and infrastructure, and have, for years, looked for ways to prevent this complexity from disrupting operations and intensifying demands on their already-strained teams.
Consequently, 2021 is going to bring a renewed urgency to automate cloud operations and integrate DevSecOps processes. To achieve this, teams will deploy out-of-the-box AIOps solutions to automate operations and remediation across the full stack. This includes automating modern software development and delivery processes to make them more streamlined, responsive, and accurate. Automating cloud operations and CI/CD pipelines is essential for overcoming accelerated cloud scale and complexity—and this will prove even more necessary in the year ahead.
There are already several solutions with integrated, automatically triggered incident workflows, such as ServiceNow and PagerDuty, but we’ll continue to see an increase in platforms that allow this flexibility. By enabling teams to streamline and automate the DevSecOps toolchain, implement automatic anomaly detection, and trigger auto-remediation, an increasingly autonomous cloud will significantly reduce strain on overburdened teams and free them to adapt their operations culture for accommodating greater collaboration.
Last year's accelerated digital transformations and increased demand for digital services weren't a one-off for 2020; those trends will continue fueling movements throughout 2021 and beyond. If organizations want to keep up with the rapid pace of their customers' needs and more robust digital experiences in 2021, that's going to mean intensifying efforts for application security and DevSecOps integration, accelerating autonomous cloud operations, and spearheading a new wave of digital transformation driven by user-friendly digital experiences.
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