What does the future hold for DevOps?

F5 acquires NGINX to bridge NetOps and DevOps
F5 acquires NGINX to bridge NetOps and DevOps
What does the future hold for DevOps?
What does the future hold for DevOps?

Having spun out of the more established methods of developing software, such as waterfall and Agile, DevOps builds upon the best practices of these other methods to help drive enterprise performance in the modern digital economy. In today’s world, where virtually every aspect of people’s day-to-day lives is touched in some way by technology, DevOps offers organisations a brand new way to quickly deliver value to their customers.

However, while DevOps is an approach that’s impact is starting to be felt across the technology space, with a number of trends emerging in the past year, predicting what the future holds for it and those companies that adopt it remains difficult.

One thing that is clear is that an increasing number of businesses are beginning to recognise the power that DevOps can bring and what it can entail for operational efficiency and overall performance, which means that in the near future, we can expect to see a massive uptick in DevOps adoption.

Furthermore, since it fits seamlessly into Agile operations, DevOps is likely to experience rapid adoption rates, particularly amongst smaller businesses and greenfield operations, which will have an easier time transitioning to and implementing DevOps immediately. The more monolithic and complex enterprises may, however, need to look to other business models to determine the best way to include these methodologies.

Dave Blakey, CEO at Snapt, suggests that something else that will be crucial to keep in mind in 2017 is that implementing a DevOps approach means not only changing the organisation’s technology system, but far more crucially, also altering the cultural system.

“Future success with DevOps relies on the business acknowledging that both are intertwined and that in order to be successful, both systems must evolve together, with the culture change ultimately coming first, in order for the technology change to be more easily accepted,” he says.

In line with this approach towards changing culture, he adds, is the fact that leaders will need to learn how to manage and lead by giving their people context and information to make better decisions – as opposed to simply giving them tickets or briefs.

“As we move forward into this DevOps future, it will become critical for good leaders to value taking care of people and providing them with what they need. Those who master this approach will undoubtedly discover that their people create some truly great products.”

Another important evolution in the world of DevOps that is expected to come to the fore in 2017 is that of continuous delivery, which is the process of rapidly developing software and iterating through quick, small-batch releases.

Continuous delivery is something that has, in the past, been the exclusive domain of the large web innovators like Facebook, Amazon and Google. However, the near future will see an increasing number of companies realising that this is the key to unleashing an enterprise’s innovation engine.

Ultimately, when the whole stack, which encompasses infrastructure, compliance, security, micro-services and applications, can be expressed as code, then IT will be able to deliver value far more rapidly.

The most notable thing that lies in the immediate future of DevOps is that this methodology is going to become increasingly mainstream. Already, some businesses are using DevOps to get code out the door faster and more efficiently. Soon we will see other departments – such as security – noticing the value of DevOps and looking at how they can begin to incorporate key points into their departments.

Blakey says that DevOps will continue to evolve for the foreseeable future, perhaps to the point where it expands beyond the ‘dev’ and ‘ops’ areas, to include executives and other business units.

“It is nearly impossible to predict how the tech industry will evolve in the future, as this depends on too many variables. However, one thing we can be sure of is that those leaders and organisations that are able to anticipate and adapt to changing conditions in order to add value to their customers will position themselves best for future success. Those businesses that understand and utilise DevOps effectively will witness both innovation and quality increases that should drive improved profit, shareholder value and advances in security and safety,” he concludes.

By Dave Blakey, Snapt CEO