DevOps is growing up. It’s no longer the exclusive domain of high-profile digital leaders like Google and Netflix. Increasingly, conventional businesses are proving that DevOps offers a route to effective digital transformation.
This is good news for traditional enterprises under threat of digital disruption. Many face a growing gap between what they offer and what today’s customers expect. With new market entrants in the wings ready to capitalise on this, business giants of the analogue era are falling with alarming regularity. Much of the time, it’s because they’ve done too little, too late to meet heightened customer demands and expectations.
The stranglehold of legacy IT
Large enterprises often find it hard to increase the velocity of software delivery and ramp up product innovation. Yet these capabilities are critical to success in a fast-paced, ultracompetitive world.
Part of the problem is legacy IT, those outdated systems and ageing technologies deeply entrenched in business processes and operations. They can hinder rapid innovation and product improvement, because activity is typically distributed amongst siloed, role-specific teams. Hand-offs and conflicting priorities between development, testing and administrative teams stall progress.
Consequently, for many enterprise organisations it takes months for an idea to journey from conceptual development to the customer. By that time, any new characteristics are likely to have lost their innovative edge. For digital age success, product improvements and iterations need to be implemented far more quickly. Those months need to become minutes.
New tech doesn’t hold all the answers
Enterprise technology leaders recognise the urgency of reinvention. They know they need to overhaul and reposition IT. They’re eager to make the business more adaptive, responsive and intuitive whilst improving stability, compliance and security. But all of this is very hard to achieve.
That’s because digital transformation is not simply a matter of updating IT systems. Technology has a part to play of course, but it’s not enough in itself to turn the situation around. A significant strategic, cultural and organisational shift is also required. This poses a unique set of challenges that demand the attention of, and collaboration between, the entire C-suite.
Ultimately, the most important feature of an enterprise in the digital economy is capacity for change. Condensing change timeframes from months to minutes might seem an impossible task. But DevOps can help. It encourages cohesion, shared goals and systems thinking. As the movement matures, it brings a golden opportunity for traditional enterprises to adapt to the digital economy before it’s too late.
Rapid, safe innovation
DevOps ways of working help reposition the IT function, so it becomes a strategic business enabler rather than a back-office cost centre. This injects staid enterprises with a new lease of life. It enables innovation to flourish and ensures new ideas progress quickly into the hands of customers.
When DevOps principles are applied consistently and cohesively across an organisation, delivering software changes in a matter of minutes is perfectly achievable. Cloud-based infrastructures, self-service platforms and continuous integration, continuous delivery pipelines enable the enterprise to react quickly to customer needs. DevOps clears a smoother path for creativity and productivity while maintaining system stability, bringing energy, vitality and joy back to the innovation process. It puts the customer at the heart of the business and makes it easier to outperform the competition.
You can read about how DevOpsGroup helped a leading aerospace and defence enterprise increase the velocity of software delivery, increasing annual changes from 50-100 to 2,500 here.
Easing the pain of enterprise transformation
Lots of enterprise IT teams assume they must simply ‘work harder’ to help their business succeed in the digital age. But this is the route to burnout. DevOps offers an effective way to ease the pain, tackling the immense task of transformation in manageable chunks. Small changes can make a big difference quickly – and when people see the evidence of success, they feel inspired to do more.
At DevOpsGroup we understand the unique challenges that different types of business face. In recognition of this, our long-lived squads specialise in either enterprise or scale-up businesses. Squads build outstanding technical expertise in their given field, as well as keeping up with relevant trends and best practice guidance.
This brings better focus and purpose to the decisions we make as a business. It means we can enhance and adapt our offering with services that bring tangible improvements to customers. We act quickly and keep on top of new developments with our tier-one technology partners, AWS and Microsoft.
During the 2020s, DevOps will become increasingly mainstream. Progressive organisations of all sizes will adopt it to ensure IT works effectively to deliver on business strategy and objectives. Here at DevOpsGroup, our goal is to help them do it better, faster, safer.