What is DevOps? 5 Ways to Transform Your Development Operations

At its most basic, development operations (DevOps) is a set of IT practices that aims to bring together software developers and operations staff to more closely and effectively collaborate on projects. More robustly, it is frequently defined as a methodology to reduce the development life cycle by creating a culture that breaks down the division between these teams. Regardless of definition, however, it’s safe to say that DevOps is vastly different from the traditional model.

Traditionally, barriers have existed between these two sides of the IT department. By breaking them down, companies can reduce friction and deployment time for new versions of software.

In the long run, effective DevOps can result in shorter development cycles for your organization or team, as well as time and money saved, giving you a competitive edge.

The name of today’s game is bringing better solutions to market faster, and DevOps can help you achieve that. But how can you transform your DevOps to ensure such success?

Assess Current Team Members

Take a look at who’s currently a part of your software development and operations teams. Are you employing the right people—those willing to collaborate and do what it takes to get updates out quickly?

Identify talent from within your organization that can contribute and fill out the rest of the team with carefully selected candidates.

Build the Bridge

First and foremost, how is the quality of coordination and communication between your software development and operations teams? Take a look at the current state of affairs, identify where improvements can be made, and start from there.

A skills-gap assessment can help you establish which roles and skills you’ll need in order to achieve your mission. What skills do current team members have? How do the skills you have contribute to your larger teams or businesses goals? Which are lacking/should you hire for?

Invest in the Right Tools

Next, take a look at the tools you’re currently employing and what tools might be a better fit to further unite teams and keep projects moving forward seamlessly.

An advanced DevOps stack can not only attract top talent to your business, but it can help keep them there. So give your old, legacy technology the boot and invest in the tools your team will actually use.

Try It the Amazon Way

Jeff Bezos of Amazon has a rule: every internal team should be small enough that it can be fed by two pizzas. This small-team structure means less time spent getting everyone on the same page and more time dedicated to getting new solutions out the door.

That’s because people on smaller teams are more personally productive, as it’s been found that individual performance decreases as group size increases. What’s more, people on bigger teams are often less engaged.

Ensure Leadership is On Board

Last but not least, it’s essential that company leadership is on board with DevOps transformation, as it will entail both process and cultural changes. The continuous integration and delivery model that DevOps enables will require continual business stakeholder engagement.

There needs to be consistent communication between leadership and IT regarding objectives, pain points, and key initiatives. This will ensure your DevOps team is constantly up-to-date and driving the company forward.

DevOps transformation is a long and continuous process, so make sure expectations are in check and you give the process enough time to work its magic. Empower your team to create a real partnership, one dedicated to making the company more effective and efficient as a whole.