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2018, the year that...DevOps will be taken seriously in enterprise

09 Feb 2018

By Simon Horrocks, Country Manager ANZ at AppDynamics

Most forward-thinking businesses have integrated DevOps strategies into their models.

But 2018 will be the year that enterprise-wide adoption of DevOps becomes a reality. Many enterprises, such as Adobe, are already successfully implementing DevOps frameworks, and we’ll see more big-name rollouts over the next 12 months.

Analysts at Forrester are predicting that 2018 will be “the year of enterprise DevOps.” However, in Australia the state of play is somewhat different.

Local arms of global companies are just testing the waters when it comes to DevOps, for example with Deloitte’s acquisition of Sydney-based DevOps firm Strut Digital, but in many ways, DevOps doesn’t share the widespread adoption or uptake on planning seen internationally.

Local adoption of DevOps is maturing – a recent study showed for Australian senior managers, DevOps is a major part of their move to cloud. In these early stages, it’s vital the transition to DevOps is pioneered from all levels of the business to ensure organisational-wide buy-in.

Onboarding stakeholders early will aid in demonstrating what the practice will look like for their specific business and how this impacts bottom line.

Setting realistic benchmarks and KPIs best-suited for the enterprise will help the C-suite visualise the benefits of DevOps, and encourage them to seriously consider how the practice can transform the enterprise in 2018.

Translating DevOps into business value

DevOps will look different in large (often global) enterprises when compared to smaller, more agile organisations.

In 2018, it will be the role of IT departments to translate how DevOps, a practice that emphasises the collaboration of IT professionals, will ultimately benefit the enterprise as a whole.

Aside from the obvious changes organisations can expect to see from DevOps, such as breaking down silos between fragmented departments, DevOps practices will also help deliver applications faster, more reliably - and with fewer errors.

In Puppet’s latest State of DevOps, high performing IT organisations have 46 times more frequent code deployments, 440 times faster lead time from committing to deploy, and 96 times faster mean time to recover from downtime.

Don’t wait for change to come from the top

DevOps in enterprises cannot be a top-down initiative and is most successful when it’s a grassroots movement that becomes the catalyst for a culture change.

In a perfect world, this newfound team atmosphere gains steam and spreads naturally among both sides creating a consistent feedback process and work cadence.

Demonstrating that multiple teams can – and already are – working more collaboratively to bring about better results will be critical evidence when putting forward a business case to pursue DevOps.

Combating the legacy issue(s)

Legacy, which can encompass a few different concepts, comes with its own challenges.

The first and foremost is the legacy of the team atmosphere and culture.

DevOps champions will inherently run into the arguments from traditionalists, echoing the importance to start moving to DevOps at the practitioner level, rather than a company-wide mandate.

People need to want to move to DevOps. Once they’ve bought into the changes, this objection likely won’t come up as much.

The second legacy issue is existing tools. Teams in 2018 who still rely on dinosaur tools that don’t support a rapid release cycle with more agile principles can use this as an excuse to start the discussion of tool migration.

Enterprises have already started investing both money and trust in the cloud and integrated products, and this will increase this year. So when deciding which tools to invest in, make sure to map them to the application lifecycle and integrate effectively with other tools.

2018 will be the first year where DevOps is no longer just a term du jour for Australian technology teams. The most successful DevOps deployments will be the ones that think outside of the IT silo and involve the wider business.

At its core, DevOps is a philosophy, not a resolution, and it’s this flexibility that allows enterprises to build strategies that address their particular needs and service customers in the best possible ways.

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