DevOps is crucial for fast deployments and an efficient pipeline. As an approach to software development, it allows companies to produce better software via collaborative organizational improvements.
But not everyone has the resources to introduce DevOps into their infrastructure, or to do it well. As a result, DevOps service providers have expanded their outreach, offering unique DevOps as a service (Daas) support to those who need DevOps but cannot introduce the methodology correctly on their own.
Daas providers are highly beneficial for capturing the transformative aspects of DevOps. So let’s explore all you need to know about DevOps and DevOps as a service.
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DevOps is a software development methodology that combines developers (dev) with operations (ops). It leverages tools, practices, and set principles that instill a cultural mindset of integration. Unified teams result in a robust and efficient software development lifecycle — one of the primary DevOps methodology goals.
In addition, by removing silos common to the tech industry, DevOps creates more holistic operations designed for velocity. Continuous integration and delivery allows projects and teams to earn rapid incremental releases, because the roles of administration and development have been melded together.
The DevOps methodology posits four tenets that will improve your organization's development practices:
Organizations that adopt the methodology gain multiple DevOps benefits:
Not only will your software receive a boost in reliability, but the entire company’s work environment will become grounded through well-balanced DevOps practices. Tensions that arise from system bottlenecks thwart productivity. Therefore, leveraging DevOps principles can create an office culture that features happy and effective teams.
Increased collaboration and the inclusion of feedback cycles will result in direct improvements in release quality. For example, automated continuous testing will catch errors at speed, leading to bug-free releases with no loss of pipeline velocity.
Traditional IT structures suffered from management bottlenecks, a lack of transparency, and little buy-in from stakeholders. Such conditions stifled innovation and significantly ballooned costs. With DevOps, automation and collaborative teams have the room to pursue integrated work that boosts innovation.
When utilized properly, DevOps will transform your entire management and department setup. Repurpose ineffective and inefficient elements until all company levels operate in a streamlined manner. Expect costs to decrease through the elimination of context switching and disparate processes.
Get more for less. A well-functioning pipeline is flexible, making it far easier to integrate changes or adjustments. This is where developers can make rapid deployments. As a result, your firm's productivity will skyrocket and gain a competitive market advantage.
Automation and agility lower management responsibilities, which frees employees to engage in more beneficial work. In turn, resources are better controlled. Couple such advancements with continuous delivery to earn a far higher return on investment.
A company culture that allows for experimentation, failure, and feedback not only locates problems faster but has the methods and systems to swiftly fix any errors. As a bonus, such a learning mindset leads to better employee engagement and retention.
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Agile and DevOps have many similarities, however they are not the same. Even though many regard DevOps as an offshoot of agile, this is actually just a perspective intended to improve on agile’s positive aspects.
Agile involves continuous iterations within the software development lifecycle, yet approaches the task through incremental design. Elements are composed of smaller iterative pieces that integrate into a seamless pipeline. DevOps takes many of these core agile concepts and repurposes them over more holistic methods.
For example, DevOps and agile both help introduce fast and flexible responses to changes and adjustments. Both methodologies hold collaboration as a core principle. Both also ensure that interactions between disparate teams are more important than processes. DevOps and agile connect over the common goal of rapid and efficient release cycles.
Differences between DevOps and agile
Although agile and DevOps have much in common, they are not identical.
For example, while both approaches value feedback, agile is more customer-centric (DevOps integrates feedback cycles from all stakeholders, not just the customer). Another example is that agile puts much more focus on software development, while DevOps is interested in fluid thinking dynamics related to deployments.
In short, agile remains a framework for delivery software, while DevOps is an organizational philosophy for achieving continuous deployments through the use of modern operations tools. DevOps stitches tools, tasks, values, and processes into one collaborative mindset, whereas agile is more of a development manifesto.
Just as DevOps grew out of agile, site reliability engineering (SRE) expanded once the principles of DevOps took hold in the IT community. Traditionally, job roles involved a split production away from development, but DevOps helped to repair that divide.
With that bedrock of integration, many engineers started to advise, design, and improve upon the operations themselves. Code could automate not just the project but the tasks that operated the project itself. The results made it far easier to reliably scale a system, a primary benefit for any organization. SRE thus became its own engineering philosophy.
SRE principles and practices have quite a bit of overlap with the fundamentals of DevOps. They are not competing methods, but are two sides of the same coin with common principles:
When applied in tandem, both SRE and DevOps result in better management and the execution of complex distributed systems. For enterprises that hope to scale efficiently (and remain competitive), the two concepts are crucial for maintaining stability.
The differences between DevOps vs SRE relate to the focus of each. DevOps remains a more open-ended philosophy that outlines principles related to an organization's culture. SRE, on the other hand, involves itself with the practical applications of those principles, and how they might apply to the end-users’ experience with a product. Consider SRE as the methods that help improve on how DevOps builds and deploys applications.
In particular, SRE remains more focused on the reliability of a system as it scales. The core principles inform engineers how they can better implement DevOps as expansion causes resource utilization to strain. Site reliability engineers can then ask themselves how they might accomplish a task faster, better, and more efficiently.
DevOps encompasses several best practices that facilitate an integrated work environment. If your organization suffers from the following six “red flags”, then you most likely could benefit from adopting DevOps:
If you want to learn the exact action steps to take for implementing DevOps into your organization, then read through our startup guide on implementing DevOps.
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DevOps as a service is an application development philosophy. It is a delivery model for tools and processes that helps to practically facilitate the core principles of DevOps within an organization.
Because DevOps encompasses all aspects of the workplace environment, even the tools used to build, test, and deliver DevOps itself encompass the benefits of the methodology. Managed (cloud-based) services can contribute even more flexibility, speed, and collaboration within the software lifecycle.
In other words, the continuous delivery and cultural mindset of DevOps can also become a service provided by third parties. Many consider it the next generation of DevOps, as it helps organizations access the benefits of new IT frameworks without as much risk or upfront cost. It is far more economically feasible to outsource DevOps integrations from capable, equipped, and knowledgeable experts, rather than create an in-house transformative internal structure.
To expedite the service aspects, DevOps has entered the cloud. All tools and processes are housed in a cloud-based environment to gather the benefits of agility and flexibility. Your entire pipeline could be easily accessible by all departments (developers, testers, ops, SREs), with all necessary commercial deployment processes automated within. It is the ideal way to simplify all components related to the selection, maintenance, and management of all DevOps tools.
The DevOps-as-a-service process functions with eight distinct stages. Each stage helps continuously build and deploy code so that the delivery value is highest for the end customer. DevOps depicts the standard process as a never-ending infinity loop, where the fundamentals of continuity enable increasing rewards for collaboration.
DevOps as a service mirrors the DevOps process to provide unique tools for each stage. For example, continuous integration is a core principle of DevOps, and services will likely give access to tools (Jenkins or Github) that can streamline your code builds. Case in point: Jenkins can help save time and costs as it reduces the need for provisioning nodes.
Another example includes methods to improve continuous testing. Manual testing is costly and time-consuming, but with a DevOps service that provides rapid automation, the entire DevOps pipeline velocity increases as continuous testing integrates into the process. Additionally, the more shift-left testing principles that you incorporate, the easier it is to locate and fix bugs earlier in the process.
There are several advantages gained when you outsource your DevOps implementation:
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The unique requirements of your project will determine whether you need DevOps consultants or engineers. When choosing, it is best to consider who can drive the most benefits to your organization, as both roles offer distinct advantages.
Both roles involve considerable overlap, especially if you hire a vetted specialist with highly regarded DevOps engineer skills. Still, a consultant is ideally the first step for companies considering a wholesale internal change. An expert who can facilitate the shift into a DevOps culture is a helpful resource, especially as most businesses need a return on investment above what the traditional roles of administrator, developer, and operations currently achieve.
In addition, if you intend to leverage cloud-based environments, you may need to plan for the additional service requirements that could require a cloud engineer rather than a DevOps engineer. There are several primary differences between DevOps consultants and DevOps engineers, so evaluate the demands of your project and who might best serve your needs.
There are several success metrics and Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) that all DevOps-as-a-service companies will measure to track tangible improvements to your pipeline:
By tracking data and implementing fixes related to the quality of your pipeline, projects, and deployments, you can make tangible changes to operations and tools or commit to problem-solving. Over time and through non-stop readjustment to the core principles of DevOps, your entire pipeline velocity and stability will increase alongside a complete overhaul of the work environment itself.
There are numerous DevOps service providers to select from, each with a unique approach to DevOps integrations and project development. Consider whoever you hire as a technical partner, as they will become a crucial part of your organization's makeup and overall structure.
Interested in learning more about our DevOps services? EPAM Anywhere Business is happy to work with you and prove that we are the service provider of choice.
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