Curious about DevOps benefits? Whether you are just adopting DevOps or improving your current process, we explain the top benefits and how to maximize them.
What are DevOps benefits?
In DevOps, the operations and development work closely together during the entire software development lifecycle. The collaborative approach in DevOps leads to many benefits, including:
Before we dive into the benefits of DevOps, though, let’s take a step back to understand what DevOps is in the first place and why it matters. DevOps is a methodology that brings together operations and development to improve the software development process.
But what does that mean in practice, and why are so many teams using this methodology?
If implemented well, a DevOps team can work together across development, quality assurance, testing, and operations teams to code more quickly, resolve errors more effectively, and release to the end-user with higher frequency. However, to accomplish that quick turnaround, teams must commit to continuous integration, testing, and deployment through automation. By automating the testing and deployment part of the lifecycle, teams can free up resources and work more efficiently.
There are a lot of comparisons between DevOps and Agile as development methodologies, as they have similar goals of increasing development efficiency. However, Agile is more about addressing gaps between customers and developers by rolling out rapid changes. Meanwhile, DevOps practices are about bringing together development and operation teams through continuous testing and development.
Both large and small companies have adopted DevOps principles because it has proven so beneficial. But without a clear foundation in place around the methodology and how teams work together, it won’t really work. Teams need to collaborate on decisions such as setting up automation and other processes.. Additionally, teams must also ensure that their goals truly reflect customer needs across each part of testing, integration, and deployment.
So what kind of benefits can businesses expect to see from DevOps practices? That answer will differ for individual teams depending on priorities. However, there is no doubt that bringing in DevOps principles to current working practices will add immense value for teams and how they work, and in turn, what gets released to customers.
We’ll take a more in-depth look at some of the DevOps advantages and disadvantages to better understand what DevOps principles look like in practice.
The first major benefit that DevOps practices can have for teams is improving the actual working process. There is a lot more flexibility for teams to work more collaboratively with DevOps, as they remain in contact throughout the lifecycle. At the same time, DevOps provides clear delineations of responsibilities to ensure that all the necessary steps of the pipeline are completed. Through implementing DevOps, each team member has a clear idea of what code changes need to be done and at what frequency to maintain continuous integration. The testing process is standardized and automated, so it’s easier to pinpoint and solve issues before sending it back for testing.
Automating testing and deployment makes an even more significant impact. Teams can create consistent testing methods for each code change without needing too much manual intervention. It gives teams time to innovate while still ensuring that customers aren’t forgotten. Plus, it provides a level of reliability and security needed to keep customers happy with new changes rolling out.
All of this leads to the core reason DevOps is being adopted: It enables teams to work faster, better, and push out more stable changes which leads to faster releases for customers.
While there are definitely many DevOps benefits for business, there is a lot to be said around what it can do for teams. DevOps is fundamentally about collaboration and working together rather than in isolation. Development teams aren’t just “throwing code over the wall” for operations teams to deal with. Instead, both teams collaborate throughout the entire lifecycle of the project.
Additionally, the added communication also leads to a more streamlined development process where everyone understands their roles. Teams are focused on what needs to be done, and changes are made in small batches, making it more manageable overall. And with continuous testing in place, it’s faster to communicate changes and knowledge-sharing is easier - with better results in subsequent code changes. That means deployments are not as stressful, and teams have more time and less pressure, leading to a better work culture.
DevOps benefits for business extend to both internal and external stakeholders. When integrating processes such as continuous integration and continuous testing, it’s ultimately the end-user that the process is working for. If DevOps practices are implemented successfully within teams, customers will see the results as well. DevOps helps teams shift to a customer-focused mindset and put their needs first. Working together with operations teams, DevOps principles make the product more tangible for teams and what they are working towards. Adopting DevOps practices gives them more insight into customer needs and what needs to change to improve the product.
In turn, this increases customer loyalty and satisfaction, which has a major impact on businesses. Timelines for releases are shortened since changes are made in smaller batches, leading to faster and more frequent updates to improve the product. Releases are more stable, with fewer bugs and issues cropping up, leading to a better product that is constantly improving. DevOps benefits both the internal engineering org and the end user customers.
While DevOps is a great methodology for teams, there are some challenges to succeeding with it. The success of DevOps practices in teams very much relies on how it’s approached in the first place. Choosing the right tests for automation, measuring and evaluating progress, and even making sure that there are enough resources in place for the practice itself — these are all things to factor into the decision to adopt the methodology.
Let’s start with the first point around automation. While it will ultimately save time for teams, it also requires a lot of initial work. There needs to be a discussion on what tests are valuable to automate, based on how frequently these tests are used and how simple they are to automate. Other considerations also include DevOps tools and setting up servers that can help with the process. Even when the automation is set up, some manual work is still needed to ensure that it’s working smoothly by looking for false positives and negatives throughout the testing process.
Secondly, DevOps practices also need to consider how progress is measured and how to identify areas of improvement. Faster deployment is a great target, but if the quality of the release is compromised, then it’s not worth it in the end. It’s up to teams to work out what metrics work for them, how that’s measured, and keep expectations realistic for themselves and customers.
Thirdly, there is also an issue of limited resources. For smaller teams that are overloaded, DevOps principles may not work, or it might take more time to work out a continuous integration and testing process that teams can handle. Even for larger teams, limited budgets and team changes can make it difficult to truly implement DevOps long-term.
With Blameless, teams can work together better, structure service level objectives (SLOs), and gain more visibility on reliability insights. Plus, Blameless automates incident response across each stage and helps teams identify issues immediately and streamline the incident management process.
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Writer & Researcher