While the software development practice of DevOps has been growing in popularity and implementation, it has not yet advanced. Its effectiveness has been debated, but many feel that it remains mostly misunderstood, and thus undervalued. It is not a software developed life cycle model but is instead the practice of integrating the relationship between development and IT operations, thereby increasing efficiency and quality of the software development process.
Without getting into the weeds, here are some ways that DevOps can change your development process for good:
- Increasing communication, collaboration, and integration across the organization: DevOps is a way to bring together the development, operations, and testing teams so that they can collaborate, communicate, and integrate with one another. A key point is many companies are incorporating outsourced and remote team. The point is to transform the process into a single operational unit so that overlapping work can be nixed and efficiency can be increased.
- Creating a stable operating environment: The challenges of changing the culture of the workplace are often highlighted in the case against DevOps, while the benefits of this are overlooked. It is true that there is a fixed cost of transforming, but the average benefits are positive in the long run. Integrating teams to work together creates a stable environment over time which will produce a cohesive atmosphere between departments and companies. In which, everyone feels the responsibility to ward off errors and a sense of pride when real objectives are presented.
- Bringing code to market faster: By creating continuous integration and delivery platform, DevOps’s automated deployment pipeline ensures that software developers are focusing on a coordinated approach in which each developer feels ownership over the product or service he or she is producing. The duration of the “ownership” is defined, whether it is only during development or is the lifetime of the product.
- Creates a continuous testing environment: Whereas the original waterfall model has software reaching the end phase before it is tested, DevOps has an essential element of constant testing in which the QA personnel are part of the DevOps team, and testing is performed throughout the delivery pipeline. This is important because the sooner you catch an error, the easier and cheaper it is to fix. Without this, entire projects can be completed, only to find out that there has been an error from the beginning and that you should start all over to fix it.
- Reducing human errors and bugs: The previous ‘ownership’ aspect of the model ensures that significant errors and or bugs are addressed before being handed off. The DevOps team will be involved in all points of the service lifecycle, from the requirements through to the planning, deployment, and maintenance. With its extensive knowledge of the infrastructure, the team will also troubleshoot and debug problems - a function that traditionally falls solely onto ops.
- Performance monitoring is continuous: The automated DevOps model includes performance tools to monitor progress for the duration of the project. Although you can’t monitor everything, you can focus on critical indicators such as development cycles, deployment, vulnerabilities, server health, and application performance.
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If you are feeling outdated with the functionality of your current software development life cycle, consider updating the actual philosophy behind it. DevOps brings cultural change to the project, enhancing the way that departments work together, and creating an environment where everyone is responsible for both failures and successes and automates the pipeline to get the project done faster.