Speeding up the flow of software development from development to production not only is it an urgency, but also it is a challenge.
It’s hard for managers to tinker with operations. DevOps practices, within the software development cycle, came precisely to propose a profound transformation in this.
Implementing the best practices of a DevOps cycle requires careful evolution so as not to disrupt the functioning of activities. But as somewhere you have to start, this article is the right spot.
In this post, you will see the best 5 practices you can start right now in your organization using DevOps. GitScrum has the best features to implement DevOps practices in your team!
What is DevOps?
DevOps is a work model that unites, throughout the lifecycle of a product, the development and operations teams, and sometimes security (DevSecOps), to gain agility and increase communication and collaboration in processes considered to be not very agile .
Therefore, it is not a position, nor a methodology, nor a software, nor a way to quickly adjust the problems of an organization, but a way of working to improve and integrate practices, processes, and systems.
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Does my organization need DevOps?
DevOps practices have emerged and thrived in areas of software development, where they were implemented to confront traditional working models such as waterfall, where there is little or no connection between teams.
If you’re not tech, don’t have cloud infrastructure, and think DevOps practices aren’t for your business, check this out.
Although DevOps was born with the move to the cloud, that is, with the move to an elastic and containerized infrastructure where automation is easier, this does not mean that it cannot benefit on-premise ecosystems, especially when the idea is migrating it to the cloud.
Now, if your systems haven’t come out of the first version yet, your organization is putting its future at risk.
DevOps, like agile, is a way to help teams work together towards their goals. For this, it involves collaboration, communication and continuous operational improvements. These requirements are necessary for all organizations to grow.
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Best DevOps practices you can add to your organization
You don’t hire or purchase a DevOps system. It is a cultural and procedural adjustment that affects the entire organization. Although there is a lot of literature, there are no manuals on how to do it.
For this reason, implementing it is so difficult. In addition, there is a very particular process for each organization, depending on its IT infrastructure and corporate structure.
The good news is that some of the principles of this way of working can be implemented now and there are, at least, 5 best practices to work out DevOps in your team:
1. Put people above plans, processes and tools
If you plan on implementing DevOps practices, get ready. You will need a great effort to make everyone understand that the practice creates value for the entire organization, generating a real change in culture and mindset.
In an organization, especially a large one, it’s very easy to put processes and tools above everything else and stay within that mindset, not so much because it makes sense, but because it’s the way things have always been done.
Regardless of who is responsible for this, it is important to assess whether employees, stakeholders, and, above all, customers are benefiting from their current mindset.
Within DevOps practices, as well as agile, there is no process so perfect and well done that it cannot be improved. Sell this idea to the teams. This principle creates an openness to change and experimentation.
2. Make visual management
One of the requirements to implementing DevOps practices is to spend some time studying how your processes work right now. It is from them that you will assess what is working well and what is not, then prioritizing what to adjust first.
To be able to improve something, you need to know it with complete transparency. Identify what’s working – where the team creates value – and what can be improved – why it doesn’t – in all aspects: from operations to tools to results. Google has this quick test.
This work is nothing more than the construction of a Value Stream Map (VSM), that is, a very detailed visual presentation of your processes and the time they take to happen, end to end.
With a clear look at where the process creates value and where it doesn’t, you’ll know where to act. Of course, the VSM doesn’t tell you what you need to do, but it gives you objective guidance.
3. Start working in small but frequent batches
From your VSM, you will be able to set specific, measurable goals and results with a deadline.
Make sure you don’t want to do it all at once. It’s faster to build small changes than big ones, which are harder to validate and maintain.
You’ll work in light of the cycle of DevOps practices we’ve seen above. Ask yourself which of the non-value-creating activities can be automated or subsumed into other value-creating phases.
4. Involve the team in choosing the tools
Equip your team with tools that can streamline the routine and are comfortable. To do this, let the team participate in their choice.
This practice is quite common in companies like Google and Netflix, which see empowerment as a kind of co-responsibility for systems and costs.
For this, they select cross-sectional areas and representatives from different teams, who establish a wide range of tools to act on the organization’s needs.
They also recommend periodic review of tools, which provide the opportunity to discuss new technologies. And finally, the use of processes to document the use of tools outside the already used set.
5. Create a DevOps Culture
Creating a DevOps culture means changing organizational paradigms by integrating development and operations teams to deliver products and services with quality and agility.
In this sense, being aligned with the DevOps culture requires efficient internal processes that generate customer satisfaction. Thus, we can say that DevOps is an approach created to ensure that high-quality software reaches end-users with excellence.
That is, adopting a new mindset for software development is an evolution in the way organizations are. And that means applying best practices in developing, testing, and delivering products and services.
One of the main results of the DevOps culture for the company, in addition to the best-developed product/service, is the trust, collaboration, collective responsibility, and learning of professionals.
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How to measure DevOps success?
To measure the ROI of DevOps practices, it is recommended to base yourself on the 3 main components of this philosophy: people, process, and technology.
Focus on productivity and quality of work. Find out how long the professional takes to complete each task and how they deliver.
Measure speed, relevance, effectiveness and efficiency at work. Customer feedback surveys can help link numerical values to quality, performance, and product experience.
Technology metrics measure hardware, software, and service functions. Software failure rate connects directly to development and deployment metrics.
The Practices That Lead to Perfection
Finally, adopting DevOps practices is no longer a matter of “if” but “when”. Moreover, they’ll help your team implement improvements more often, faster, and with fewer failures. This will help your team easily adapt to new scenarios, experiment more, and have more resilience to resolve issues.
Adopting all DevOps practices is a gradual process, where reaching maturity takes time and a lot of practice.
Start with the points we brought up in this article and act on your main pains, to feel the benefits of the model and validate it, generating a virtuous circle of engagement.
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