The main goal of operations is to maintain stable and healthy applications, while the main goal of development is to rapidly produce new features to meet business and customer needs. Change is implicitly the greatest enemy of stability, and understanding the conflict between development and operations is one of the main goals of DevOps.
Bridging the DevOps conflict, or taking down the wall that has grown between these silos, is partly a cultural change and partly a technological change. Better communication, better collaboration, and more productive relationships between development and operations will surely contribute to a healthier and more productive organization, but just communicating alone is not enough to enable organizations to succeed in today’s challenging business environment.
Technology and work-related concepts must support this transformation, or we will be left with a lot of good will but not much in terms of successful process improvements. We need to increase our overall efficiency and deal with risk resulting from business end users demands for frequent changes, robust features and new product releases.
Our experience has been that the key factors for successful DevOps are:
- Adopting agile concepts over waterfall concepts, thus enabling smaller, more focused and iterative blocks of development, that result in quicker time to market, as well as smaller changes which reduce the potential risk to operations, and ultimately, the customer.
- Better collaboration and coordination is either supported by (1) employees who drives change adoption and who’s goals are to gather information and make sure everyone is in sync or (2) by collaboration tools, chats, portals, and conferences to ensure wider understanding by everyone on both “Dev” and “Ops” of the changes about to be implemented and what needs to be considered by both parties.
- Automation based on accessible information. This applies specifically to frequent changes. We cannot rely on people’s ability to remember every action they take, as well as what the action might influence, what they need to take into account in case of scope of work changes, etc.
The fact that many people are still looking to properly explain what DevOps is, demonstrates how unclear DevOps remains to the general public. DevOps does not have a consistent definition within the industry as it changes with different impacts, so it is important to dispel some of the myths.
An excerpt from our latest white paper available for free download.