Your business depends upon software to be delivered in a timely fashion. That software can be that which you sell to consumers or use internally to help make your delivery chains possible and empower your staff to get things done.
When that software development lifecycle happens as planned, things run smoothly. When the delivery of software slows, it can trigger a domino effect throughout your company and into your clients and customers.
When those bottlenecks and dominos start to interrupt your software development, the results can be catastrophic. So what do you do to avoid such issues?
You don’t panic.
You step back and examine the entire process to figure out where the problem stems from. And chances are pretty good you’ll find exactly where things went sideways. But how do you fix the problem? One route that has become incredibly popular with businesses across the globe is migrating from standard software development to DevOps.
What is DevOps?
First, we need to define DevOps. The term is an amalgamation of Development and Operations that combines the two teams to create a much more fluid and efficient development process.
Think “collaboration” between 2 departments that should have been working together all along. In other words, your development team and your operations team collaborate throughout the entire lifecycle of a product, from design to deployment.
During this process, the development team will make use of many of the same techniques your developers use. For example, instead of GitHub being limited to only developers, the operations team will be given access to the content with the repositories, so they can help improve and even automate the process.
It’s also important to know that DevOps doesn’t differentiate between the sub-disciplines with operations. So engineers, administrators, operations, release engineers, testers, database administrators, network engineers, and security admins are all combined under the blanket of “Ops.”
So how does this help to accelerate development? Let’s take a look.
It’s all about collaboration
Before adopting DevOps, you had departments working in silos, which meant one department doing one thing and another doing something completely different. The communication between these silos isn’t always optimal for the development lifecycle. Communication between siloed departments can be one of the biggest issues and may hamper the process.
With DevOps, those silos are removed and everyone can communicate freely and efficiently. This next-level collaboration could mean a noticeable acceleration of your development lifecycle.
It enables automation
Automation is the way of the future for development. With DevOps, you have a much better chance at integrating automation into your development lifecycle. Consider this: with DevOps, you can automate your lifecycle such that any change within your code repository could trigger certain actions. Say, for example, your developers update the code, which then triggers a build. Upon a successful build, automatic deployment of the software is then triggered.
What that means is your lifecycle hasn’t only improved dramatically, it’s also made considerably more efficient. That level of automation will go a very long way to accelerating the development, release, and maintenance of your projects.
With the combined effort of Developers and Operations, the build quality of your software will be greatly improved. The reasons for this are numerous, but ultimately it boils down to more minds working together in a more collaborative environment.
When you nurture that kind of collaboration everything will improve, including the quality of your builds. You’ll have more staff members able to examine areas like features, performance, reusability, security, reliability, and deployability. Developers alone can’t cover that much ground. By bringing these two worlds together, the whole is capable of far more than the two working alone.
Time to market
Of all the improvements you’ll see with DevOps, an accelerated time to market will be the one thing that’ll have stakeholders excited the most. When the Development and Operations universes come together, the whole of your software lifecycle is shortened, thereby accelerating the time to market for your software.
One way this is made possible is that your process can integrate tasks like Q&A and security within the entire lifecycle (instead of them being separate processes).
You will also find that DevOps lessens the amount of miscommunication that frequently occurs during a standard software development process. Since all of those teams are integrated, they can more easily avoid miscommunication, misunderstandings, and mistakes.
That makes for much more efficient processes, which translates to your software being ready for the public much faster.
When you have a UX (User Experience) team that works outside of the developers, problems can arise. A UX team might have data that points to the need for a particular design element.
When those teams work separately, that idea may or may not get communicated to the developers effectively. If not, then the UX will have to be addressed near the end of the development process. That can necessitate internal changes to the code, which can cascade through the entire codebase.
With the UX team integrated into DevOps, you avoid those costly hiccups. Not only does that mean the software is delivered faster, but it’s also more reliable and better designed.
Done right, DevOps can completely revolutionize the way your company handles the software development lifecycle. In this revolution, you’ll find a dramatic acceleration of the process, which will not only please your customers but bolster your bottom line. That’s a win-win for everyone involved.