DevOps – WHAT IT REALLY IS?

Adding date: 30.03.2018 | Poland

Typing in Google search phrase "DevOps what is it?" we get, about, 405,000 results. It says a lot about the scale of the phenomenon, but it also suggests a huge amount of definitions and explanations of the subject. In this article, we will answer the question of what is DevOps and why has it gain such popularity in IT world. 

CONTINUOUS IMPROVEMENT IS THE ROAD TO SUCCESS

However, before we go to DevOps, about which the world heard in 2008, let’s go back a few decades, more precisely to 1986. Then Masaaki Imai presented in his book term Kaizen – a practice of continuous improvement and at the same time the key to Japan's competitive success. In a big shortcut, Kaizen philosophy can be defined as a continuous improvement of the production and management process at all levels of the organisation. These are daily, sometimes small at a first sight changes, which over time begin to create a huge difference. What Kaizen has in common with DevOps? In both cases, it is about striving for the maximum quality of improvement through continuous improvement, close cooperation between the teams and, above all, the highest efficiency of these activities, mainly in terms of reliability and competitiveness of the product. 

COOPERATION ABOVE ALL

DevOps places great emphasis on the close cooperation of programmer, operation and support departments. Thanks to this collaboration it is possible to produce software incomparably faster. DevOps is inherently designed to stimulate this cooperation and influence innovation. It is also worth adding that the lack of cooperation departments has greatly contributed to the concept of DevOps. Many companies on their own skin felt how expensive this type of "uncooperating" of key trial participants could be. So, the old saying is confirmed here that there is no bad thing that would not work out well.

More and more companies began to put on their own applications, designed exclusively for their clients, which ultimately led to the emergence of separate departments of programmers who learned to quickly produce dedicated software. However, system and application administrators have never put on speed, but on their stability and nonfailure. The clash of these two worlds must have led to the development of new cooperation systems to maintain the continuity and security of the applications and systems, on the other hand, enable the rapid delivery of the value created by programmers.

It is worth to adding that previous Cloud Computing concepts or Hybrid IT was created (and sold) by the hardware and software manufacturers. DevOps however has huge potential and is successfully implemented in so many companies because of its philosophy of interoperability, created by programmers and administrators together.

To conclude, we can tell that DevOps is: 

  • The response to the increasing emphasis on manufacturing speed and the quality of application maintenance
  • Philosophy, and above all, effective interoperability between programmers and administrators
  • Concept created by the developers and administrators themselves.

FEEDBACK WORKS WONDERS

High quality of the product is of importance in the software manufacturing process. Colloquially speaking too many "falling apart" applications saw the light of day. DevOps is intended to prevent similar cases, not only through the already mentioned close cooperation of the developers, operations and support departments, but also by streamlining the process of creating and verifying the created software. With automated tests, any errors are already detected at the product stage. What's more, they are detected quickly. The feedback works miracles here and makes it possible for the responsible people to make all necessary modifications in a regular way, a little on the principle: "kill the monster while it is still small". 

DevOps AND THE TIME FACTOR

At first glance, it might seem that the introduction of DevOps rules in the company may severally increase the product's creation and verification process. In fact, it is completely the opposite. The detection of errors already at the production stage, as well as the interplay between the employees of the departments, bring tangible benefits also in terms of time savings. Errors noticed early enough are usually easier to remove. Increasing the sense of responsibility for activities among employees – YES – sometimes requires time (mainly in terms of changes in mentality), but it results in excellent teamwork soon, which also positively contributes to the improvement of the process of formation. The quality of the final product and the acceleration of the implementation itself. 

  • As a time, factor, DevOps is therefore:
  • Streamlining the software development and maintenance process
  • Factor accelerating the implementation itself
  • A factor that increases the quality of the final product. 

 

DevOps AND THE COST FACTOR

Companies that wonder whether the introduction of DevOps will have an impact on the cost reduction, they have no way of wondering. This restriction is already affected by the shortening of product development and deployment time. DevOps: 

  • Prevents downtime
  • Reduces testing costs and reduces the time required to repair errors
  • Minimises the problems with launching the product on the market. 

It can be said that DevOps is materialised saying "time is money" and at the same time a very good investment, which will quickly return and will benefit in the future. 

FOR WHOM DevOps? Above all for companies that produce and implement a lot of software. DevOps works great especially when the software requires frequent and dynamic changes or modifications. At the same time, companies from the financial, media, telecommunications or insurance sectors as well as internet portals and companies related to e-commerce immediately come to mind. Applicability of DevOps is huge, and the effects of its introduction are invaluable.  

Company ESKOM has many years of experience in implementing solutions for DevOps also has HPE Platinum Partner and Premiere Red Hat partnership. ESKOM will organize your company's manufacturing processes according to the concept DevOps and provide the appropriate tool support.

Author: Rafal Skóra, Senior IT Project Manager / Solution Architect at ESKOM IT Sp. z o.o

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