Businesses need DevOps to compete, but must follow best practices to mitigate risk

Software development and IT operations, collectively known as DevOps, play a vital role in modern application development. DevOps is based on a set of continuous delivery principles to create a reliable, repeatable process for software release.

The DevOps concept has been around for over a decade. However, it has only been in the past few years that it has gained widespread traction. There are still many companies that have yet to accept it, mainly because change is hard and can be risky, but the benefits are generally worth it. I’ve talked to companies that have seen software deployment times cut by 10x while implementation times for changes are by many magnitudes faster. Appdev teams that don’t adopt DevOps are holding their companies back and will eventually fall behind their peers.

DevOps development best practices

Organizations can follow DevOps best practices to ensure that they are releasing software with quality and speed, which can reduce adoption risk. Deepty Chauhan, website general manager of Keysight’s Atlanta Software Design Center, shared some of those best practices and the company’s own experience with DevOps in a recent webinarto be part of a larger one, “Optimizing DevOps with Keysight’s Continuous Testing Bootcamp”.

Nearly everything about software development is changing due to the need to innovate quickly while minimizing risk and delivering a flawless customer experience. DevOps is an opportunity for organizations to continuously deliver value to customers, Chauhan said. The key to DevOps success is getting ideas to production quickly, getting regular feedback from customers, and then repeating the process.

CI/CD is critical to DevOps success

DevOps requires continuous integration and delivery/deployment (CI/CD), which often involves continuous automation and continuous monitoring throughout the software lifecycle. CI is the automation process for developers, while CD refers to the changes developers make in the next stages of the process. Continuity Testing (CT) is also an important part of DevOps to ensure that bugs and issues can be quickly remedied.

According to Chauhan, developers should have tests run every time a build occurs, including unit and integration tests. Organizations that still adopt manual processes struggle with rapid software delivery and cannot keep up with the pace of modern application development. Today, software must be extended to hundreds of customers, not just a single customer at a time.

Chauhan gave an example of Keysight implementing DevOps in its software products to solve integration, testing, and building resilience issues. One of the products has 15 million lines of code and nearly 400 components. Through DevOps, Keysight was able to automate 85% of the tests. It reduces build time and cycle time by 30 and 40% respectively. In addition, over 160 components have been moved to the CI/CD pipeline.

DevOps and agile methods for success

The perfect recipe, says Chauhan, is to combine DevOps with agile methods. Agile is a holistic approach to the different phases of the DevOps lifecycle, including planning, development, delivery, and operations. DevOps evolved from agile techniques and other areas like waterfall, a traditional approach to software development in phases. When executed efficiently, DevOps leads to faster, more reliable software releases.

Chauhan concludes: “DevOps is a journey, not a destination. “The primary focus should be on the customer. While company management must be committed to making this happen, it is a shared responsibility. Every developer and every team must feel like they have a stake in the process. DevOps converter.”

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