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Problems Solved by DevOps

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Problems Solved by DevOps

DevOps promises speed: delivering value to customers, reducing cycle time, faster time to market, shorter mean-time-to-resolution.

· DevOps Zone ·
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To understand the current and future state of DevOps, we spoke to 40 IT executives from 37 organizations. We asked them, "What problems are solved by DevOps – where is the greatest value realized?" Here’s what they said:

Deliver Value to Customers

  • DevOps minimizes the time it takes to deliver value to customers. The cycle time from developer completion of a story/defect/task to production is dramatically reduced allowing for value to be realized as quickly as possible. 
  • Getting more satisfaction from internal users. Move from a pain point to a solution. Organizations see having a strong DevOps team and tools helps you get more satisfaction for end users and internal users. DevOps aligns IT to the business. 
  • People realize in order to provide better services and stay competitive they have to change. A big driver is business time and quality to market. It’s all about how fast can provide rights things and right quality to end-users. Change the culture from delivering what someone internally wants versus delivering what customers really want and like. Continuous experimentation – engineers experiment with new things to stay ahead of the competition. Develop and deliver at a faster pace. Faster quality to market and more experimentation that leads to innovation and better service to the end user. Use technology to help determine how to make customers lives simpler and easier. 
  • The tenets are still the same – better, faster, sooner. Increase productivity and serve customers in the best way and learn quickly. Used to have to explain why you needed to go to the cloud or pursue DevOps. Not anymore, people understand the benefits. A company in denial and doesn’t want to change processes now comes under scrutiny. 
  • The greatest value realized through DevOps is that it allows IT organizations to focus on their “core” business activities.  By removing constraints within the value stream and automating deployment pipelines, teams can focus on the activities that create customer value rather than just moving bits and bytes. These activities increase the sustainable competitive advantage of a company and create better business outcomes.

Reduce Cycle Time

  • Internally DevOps only way to achieve agility to deliver secure code with insights. Have gates and a well-crafted DevOps process. When you are delivering a new version, it can run side-by-side with the current version and you can compare metrics to accomplish what you wanted to with application and performance metrics.
  • The number one thing is velocity – move quickly. It’s also about increasing the rate of success of these digital transformation projects. Need to ensure you are successful. Increasing the rate of success. Aware of the first bunch of people doing DevOps are the best experts. The teams after that are less experienced. How can we ensure the consistency of the product and the process?
  • Speed, version cycles getting shorter. The expectation of turning out releases monthly. Can’t take months for a QA test. Have to react to changes being driven by competitors.
  • Make incremental changes to apps on the fly. Test and deploy. More agile, more valuable in the market by responding to customer demands. Fast, safer to market. DevOps helps get that done. Industry culture tech workforce is young and new, and DevOps has been there, it’s the new norm. SaaS startups were nothing before DevOps.
  • DevOps drives app dev teams towards continuous improvement and faster release cycles. Done well, this iterative process allows for more focus over time on the things that really matter – things that create great experiences for users – and less time on managing “below the waterline” tools, processes, and tech.
  • DevOps and the many related ideas surrounding it are all used by enterprises to accelerate the delivery of modern applications. The benefits are many: By introducing new digital capabilities faster enterprises can respond more quickly to customers, partners, and internal users. Businesses can greatly enhance their agility to decrease time to market, increase customer satisfaction, and gain competitive advantage. Reducing cycle times can also speed innovation. New ideas can manifest more quickly. Those that fail can be sorted from those that flourish sooner, bringing more focus to the most successful innovations faster. Multiplying this effect over many interactions of experimentation and discovery can dramatically increase the ROI on advanced research and development. The process automation that underpins DevOps and enables rapid delivery at scale also improves the bottom line. Automation improves productivity, reduces errors, and greatly enhances operational efficiency.

Time to Market

  • Moving faster. A marketing group can understand what it takes to get a feature rolled out and promote it. How does moving more quickly help me own the application? Break down siloed development vs. operations vs. business.
  • Colonial Life took their biggest and most important app and worked to improve it. They felt if we could modernize this one app, user onboarding, then we’ve proven there’s no challenge we cannot address.  They've gone from three manual releases per year to seven automated releases. Time is saved in handoffs and in transition, build time has been reduced by one third. Eliminated 10 hours of handoff per week for DBAs. In addition to going faster on new projects, they're able to go back to a backlog of projects and start improving them.
  • Being more agile saving cost, Save developer time. While it's a large upfront investment, we're lowering the negative impact of operations. We've accelerated the speed at which we go to market and our ability to scale. We view DevOps as a business enablement tool.
  • Speed to market. Six days versus six months. Competing on the ability to innovate. App delivery has to be front and center.
  • More secure and compliant environments, lower cost of operations due to reduced downtime and increased development velocity, and quicker time to market for new product features. The things most people associate with DevOps are tools and methods that enable these values, rather than the end target themselves.
  • The most important problem being solved is the reduction of the complexity of the process -- whether it's configuring a new cluster for existing applications or provisioning the environment for a new application. This contributes significantly to our business success by shortening our time to market, giving us fast feedback on features, and making us more responsive to our customers' needs.

Problem Resolution

  • The greatest value of successful DevOps higher confidence in delivery, visibility, and traceability to what’s going on, so you can solve problems quicker. 
  • From the dev team perspective, the biggest gain is a different kind of velocity – a reduced level of friction. When you do have dev and ops working together there is value in problem swarming. Getting problems fixed faster and creating a level of bonding that results in better code and apps. 
  • The greatest value of DevOps is not wasting time. Aligning an organization’s people and resources enables rapid deployments and updates which allows DevOps programs to fix problems before they become disasters. DevOps creates a culture of transparency that fosters focus and collaboration among development, operations, and security teams.

Other

  • Adoption of standards. Used to just do what you can. Today there are standards are in place. We want quantified data, metrics, and a repeatable environment. Get the baseline done correctly and be able to scale out. The data is still very valuable. Establish a repeatable baseline to scale out.
  • Automated processes to address security up front. We admire DevOps and rapid delivery but must apply security best practices. Driven by different requirements – deliver applications on time and under budget. Unless pressure is applied to DevOps we’ll have less secure application. Hackers do automated monitoring against anyone on the web.
  • The two biggest benefits of DevOps are bringing people together, which is at the center of DevOps, and automating labor-intensive activities that reduce creativity and productivity. Both are essential for increasing software quality, getting it to market faster, and driving up business value.
  • Eliminate human error. The more you automate a well-defined process you will see the greatest value. 
  • If I look at the typical enterprise the value is moving faster, empowering developers, achieving better code quality, having a more resilient infrastructure, and improving the security posture. Software created in a more granular way. There is more confidence in releases that don’t break everything.
  • Every organization understands the need to make a digital transformation. The expectation is you will provide a better CX enabled by software. Containers and DevOps are the tools of mass innovation. Modern approaches of how to build software that can be updated and scaled.
  • Speed to market and quality. Employee retention in the ops side of the house because there is such misery doing releases, deployments, and firefighting. People were quitting because they were miserable. More content employees. Mainframe developers are retiring. This is a real problem.
  • The greatest value is the improvement in the dev, test, deploy and monitor processes which leads to organizations being more nimble in their approach and innovating faster.
  • DevOps enhances overall software quality and enables teams to take innovation, agility, and flexibility one step further, with shorter, iterative processes that serve the business more effectively. With a DevOps culture, deployment, and development to production cycles can go from months to hours, without additional headcount and while decreasing risk through automation. However, despite a focus on speed through “sprint projects,” leveraging a DevOps mentality does not impact an organization’s ability to execute on larger, long-term projects. A DevOps culture does more than just improve technology use: it enables tech pros to reinvent their use of technology, transitioning from a cost center to growth driver. DevOps measures success not by meeting service level agreements, but by delighting users with constant improvement—trusting that end users will reward brands with higher return, new business, or both, and including business metrics alongside system metrics to prove it.
  • Good DevOps allows staff to focus on delivering value to the business. Low value and repetitive tasks are automated or removed from your daily work life. The greatest value realized is the time you can spend delivering good software and not being consumed by the thousand cuts of poor deliveries.
  • We didn’t realize we were encountering a lot of problems in the development and testing phases until after we adopted DevOps and saw how quickly and smoothly these updated processes were converging things. For one, we realized how much of our testing process was still being done manually. Automating wherever possible was the key to faster delivery. Besides that, embracing the use of relevant third-party applications complemented our practices and helped us ease a lot of our regularly exhausting processes.
  • We have found adopting DevOps methods and tools we are continuously improving our entire application delivery process. We are constantly finding areas where we can automate. As we move to higher levels of abstraction across development, infrastructure management, and monitoring we are improving reliability and velocity. Perhaps most important, our teams are far more integrated which delivers benefits across the board. In the past, moving faster typically meant sacrificing quality and reliability. We're finding that we can move faster while making gains in quality and reliability, which is a huge win.

Here's who shared their insights with us:

Topics:
devops ,software delivery ,visibility ,traceability ,ci/cd

Opinions expressed by DZone contributors are their own.

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