Can DevOps Really Add Value in a World of Digital Transformation?Cigniti Technologies
Technology can be productive, but in most cases, it is disruptive. Consider any new or emerging technology – their application has totally disrupted the consumer market scenario. Organizations and businesses across the globe are coaxed into adopting new ways to make their products and services more palatable for their customer base. Digital Transformation in its own stride has revolutionized the consumer scenario, and a lot has been spoken and written on the same.
Likewise, there are ongoing discussions around ways in which organizations are coping up and accepting the various facets of Digital Transformation.
Software development and Testing methodologies have changed and evolved. There is increased collaboration between teams to develop applications that are very much consumer-centric. Collaboration is needed to ensure that the applications are developed faster and quality is monitored constantly. DevOps has been increasingly adopted to gain speed as well as quality in the software application development process.
Why DevOps is a preferred approach for Digital Transformation?
Reference to Executive buy-in for DevOps, a post by Forbes cites, ‘According to Gartner, IT-related initiatives are No. 2 in priority for even CEOs behind growth, the highest ever since Gartner began their survey. Initiatives like DevOps that balance agility and risk really grease the skids. Getting executive buy-in will become significantly easier in 2018 and some may be top-down driven initiatives. Informing and educating business stakeholders proactively pays dividends.’
DevOps as an approach enables seamless collaboration between the development and the operations teams, which reduces the gap between developers and operations in the software development process. This facilitates added productivity and smooth workflow that enables continuous delivery for the organization to empower it in the longer run. DevOps tools are also leveraged to support the process and make it traceable for the respective teams. It comprises API tools, organizational tools, configuration management tools, application monitoring tools, etc.
At the conceptual level, DevOps encourages transformation not just at the development level, but equally at the organizational level. Only when all the functions collectively work, DevOps can be a complete success. But how does this add value for Digital Transformation initiatives?
Digital Transformation involves building applications that can be quickly updated without impacting consumer experience. These consumer-centric applications are needed by every business to reach out to the customers and make an impact. This is the fundamental reason why enterprises are leveraging DevOps to build contemporary web and mobile applications.
Digital Transformation and the need for Continuous Development
DevOps comes with some robust features to enable the much needed Digital Transformation initiatives and ensure the best RoI possible with it. Most important of all, the practice of DevOps brings together cross-functional teams that team up and streamline various outcomes to reach the desired business outcomes. Tools are needed to manage the same, such as the business, performance, database, functionalities, applications, and much more. Nevertheless, the basic concept remains the same, that is, to encourage collaboration and shared responsibility.
Digital Transformation is all about gaining that speed, quality, and ensuring RoI from every new technology implemented. DevOps enables the same by facilitating Continuous Development, Testing, and Integration in the Application development process. An application can be loaded on the Cloud or could be on premise, however, a DevOps approach is needed to ensure that there is no downtime and the consumer experience is not impacted. Meeting the expectations of the consumers in this scenario of minimal attention span is integral to any Digital Transformation initiative.
Digital Masters are expected to provide applications and infrastructure capabilities in an agile, flexible and swift manner, and it has been estimated that by 2020 over 30% of all new applications will be hosted on the Cloud as against the current 15%. This intensifies the need for Continuous Development and Continuous Testing, which is made possible with DevOps.
Digital Transformation and significance of Omni-channel experience
Why is it necessary for enterprises to move away from the traditional IT systems and venture into the new and much more agile set-ups? The reason is to build a customer-centric approach towards business and offer uniform experience across diverse platforms. With Digital Transformation it is imperative for any application or software to offer the same experience across any platform.
Let’s consider the current scenario in the media and entertainment segment. Numerous web channels/web-based entertainment platforms such as Amazon Prime and Netflix are engaging viewers across devices with varying dimensions and configurations. This implies that irrespective of the device or dimensions of the device, the channel has to offer the same kind of audio-visual experience to the viewers of the show. Omni-channel experience is thus imperative in a digital set-up, which can be achieved with increased collaboration between teams and quality checks on a consistent basis.
When companies bring in DevOps practices they tend to achieve larger goals with minimal impact and with less complexities. DevOps organizations are able to deliver with added speed, functionality, and more innovation. It also offers technical benefits such as Continuous Software delivery, reduced complexities to manage, and speedy resolution of problems.
Moreover, there are cultural benefits for the organization as well – more productive teams, higher engagement of resources, and better growth opportunities with more collaboration. Consequently on the business front, it enables faster delivery of features, much more stable operating environments, enhanced communication, and more focus on innovative outcomes.
DevOps for increased Stability
Getting digitally inclined implies that there is more innovation for engaging the audience. However, in a non-DevOps scenario tension rises when new features are released into production and tested for desired results. It is a flow where one party releases the features for consumption and testing by another party. How can organizations ensure stability of the application in such situations?
Whereas, in a DevOps set-up, the entire team stays responsible for the outcome till the completion of the process, which ensures that stability of the application is maintained even if new features are introduced. Aspects such as combination of shared code base, integration, automated deployments, reporting of issues/bugs, and many more factors are taken care of. Complexity of the problems is reduced as everyone is involved and all the data points are tracked across a common platform. This even speeds up the problem resolution process and the turnaround time.
It has been proven that in a DevOps scenario there is more engagement amongst various teams, as the responsibility is shared and roles even get interchanged during the process. This induces more productivity and innovation. DevOps approach encourages automated deployments and standardized production environment, which are key value points in the Digital Transformation scenario. At the same time, there is a constant check on the quality of the releases. It is evident that there is no particular approach for testing and development in the digital age, but practices such as DevOps offer the flexibility that is important for successfully implementing Digital Transformation.
At Cigniti, we standardize efforts and ensure accelerated time to market with DevOps Testing. Cigniti’s CI testing experts boast of a rich experience in Continuous Integration testing and can configure and execute popular CI tools such as Agile GO, Cruise Control, Chef, Puppet, Microsoft TFS, Jenkins, Bamboo, Hudson and so on, helping client’s DevOps teams.
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