I was excited to see that Gartner has become so bullish on DevOps – they recently predicted that by 2016, 25% of the Global 2,000 would be using DevOps. There’s been an acceleration just over the past year of DevOps “going normal”. This was also the topic of my recent talk at DevOpsDays Austin. I’ve given the “state of the union” type address there for the past two years, starting back when I was still an industry analyst.
In that same talk, I wanted to offer some advice to the DevOps community on what they can do to help all these new folks. As DevOps moves out of a niche concern into a mainstream practice, the needs and frictions will change. The recording of that talk will be up soon, but in the meantime I used my monthly column at FierceDevOps to discuss the talk I gave at the recent DevOpsDays Austin.
Here is a quick preview of the talk, as well as four areas of focus that can enable success with DevOps:
- Keep the goal focused and narrow – I’d argue that DevOps is part of the “how” for enabling continuous delivery, so much so that I’d start to treat the two as the same thing.
- Clarify the stacks and technologies – most IT people learn through tools, not through understanding why the tools are applied. Making sure we’re clear about the tool-chains in use will be helpful.
- Figure out how to work with legacy code – the early DevOps adopters had little in the way of “legacy code” to work with. The mainstream folks will be buried by legacy code. How would we advice them to manage and work with that code?
- Keep up the land grab – picking up from Agile, which sucked in product management and QA to “development,” DevOps has pulled in operational concerns. The next step is to expand further outside the realm of development and even IT into business land.
My sense is that along with just keeping up the good work, focusing on these four items will give the DevOps community plenty to do over the next year. If we can advance the knowledge just a little bit, it would greatly help expand the use of DevOps in the mainstream.