DevOps, the collaboration between development and operations teams, is a method of creating and deploying code focused on streamlining the communication between all the teams involved.
In the earliest days of this method, only IT experts and software developers were included, but it has evolved to include testers, marketers and security professionals as well as feedback from customers. Before implementing this method in your company, it is important to understand what DevOps is in practice as well as in theory and how it works at each step.
The definition of DevOps on paper focuses on the collaboration between teams so there is more rapid deployment and less finger-pointing during troubleshooting. In practice, DevOps is more focused on changing the culture around the entire software development and release process because your team needs to buy-in to the idea that this can work and not be afraid of change. DevOps uses the six steps of creating and deploying code in a continuous cycle on platforms which streamline collaboration on-site and from remote locations. Once you get used to DevOps, you can find integrated platforms which automate workflows and update runbooks easier, some platforms will even let you upload your existing documentation for integration.
There is a highly competitive market for high-speed development and release of quality software for use in-house and for selling to clients. How your business has planned to introduce DevOps as well as the process for planning projects is the important first step to the method. Throughout the process, the project and planning inform each other, so it is important for clear communication and collaboration on updates.
The important take-away for this step is that it is more than just the software developers collaborating with each other. Collaborative development means that testers can reach out in real-time with problems they are seeing, that the concerns of IT experts and security professionals are listened to by everyone on your DevOps teams, and that team members are guided through the new techniques needed by peers in the process.
Continuous testing of the software you are developing can help spot trouble before it gets lost in the code or in the notes. It can also help identify which changes have the best impact on the project and which ones should be reversed. When you work with testers, developers and marketers at this step, each member of the team can see how to improve future processes and can learn more information about the other steps that are valuable to them.
The release and deployment step is sometimes seen as the end of the project for software developers because they hand the project off to the next team and start something new. With DevOps, however, any issues with scalability, marketing or customer experience can be taken to all the teams involved to collaborate on innovative solutions. This is often where a lot of finger-pointing for deployment problems happens between the individual teams, but with clear communications and collaboration at previous steps, most issues can be addressed without blame.
Monitoring software after deployment can help you find and fix problems as they arise. When you use the DevOps method for continuous monitoring of the app throughout development, you can dedicate a couple of engineers to monitor the software and deliver quick updates to the team as needed. This allows every member to work on the next project while still offering excellent support for previous ones.
Closely related to monitoring is gathering customer feedback to optimize your software and apps. Customers can share which features they like and dislike the most, any bugs or issues they have encountered and even ask questions or request specific updates when they have access to rating systems, support chats or team emails.
DevOps is a method for creating and deploying software and applications through collaboration at every step of the process between software developers, IT professionals and security experts as well as testers and marketers. This method uses platforms designed for real-time communication between teams in various locations as well as the cultural mindset of streamlined processes and seamless collaboration.