2018 DevOps Predictions from Alfresco Software
January 16, 2018

Chris Wiborg
Alfresco Software

The following are 2018 DevOps predictions from Alfresco Software:

Software Delivery Will Accelerate in 2018

Digital leaders will outpace their rivals by adopting methodologies and mindsets that shorten software delivery cycles. They’ll also get really, really good at rapid, iterative change following design thinking principles

Digital leaders will rely more and more on Agile development methods — short sprints, scrum teams and user feedback loops — to accelerate the design, development, testing and acceptance of new applications. With its emphasis on rapid iteration and continuous improvement, Agile methodologies are quickly becoming a proven way for companies to churn out new innovations quickly. Studies already show that Agile approaches average 50 percent faster time-to-market than waterfall ones.

DevOps will become a greater catalyst for speed. Automation and tighter collaboration between development and operations will make it easier to put new code into production. Led by companies like Facebook, Google and Amazon, the world will continue to move away from "that ten-year-old solution everyone’s afraid to touch" to evergreen applications that are updated multiple times a day.

Companies Will Adopt New Application Architectures and Infrastructures

Digital leaders will build in flexibility with new application architectures and deployment models. They’ll leave legacy systems behind as they wholeheartedly embrace the cloud with microservices-based solutions.

Monolithic applications are hard to change, costly to maintain, and ill-suited to today’s dynamic business environment. That’s why digital leaders will move even faster to an agile, microservices-driven architecture.

Assembling applications from small modular services — each a self-contained building block — will allow digital leaders to transform quickly and at scale. They will be able to mix and match services to fast-track new digital offerings and processes. They will tweak and scale services to adapt to changing business models and customer expectations. And they will push innovation across the enterprise by reusing services — all without adding armies of developers or getting locked into any one technology.

Enterprises Will Integrate Data and Systems in Transformative Ways

Digital leaders will use open platforms and APIs (Application Programming Interfaces) in greater numbers to integrate information, people and processes across their extended value chain. These connections will lay the foundation for faster business flows and new digital products and services.

2018 will be all about maximizing the use of APIs to enable diverse applications to connect and share data. Digital leaders will use API-led integration to combine services and expose information in ways that deliver unprecedented customer and business value. They are already finding that within days and without lots of coding, they can roll out service innovations, revamp internal processes, enliven customer interactions, extend their digital reach, and enable entirely new business models.

2018 Will Herald an Era of Closer Business and IT Collaboration

Digital leaders will treat digital transformation as a partnership between business and IT, with a shared focus on meaningful outcomes and better experiences for customers and employees.

Digital leaders will put people — customers, citizens, employees and partners — at the center of their transformation efforts. They will prioritize design thinking, a user-centric approach that shifts the focus from adding features to adding value. They will take advantage of platform tooling to involve users in solution design and invest in dedicated UX teams to deliver better experiences faster. The list of proponents of design thinking is only expected to grow in the coming year.

Another winning strategy will be to empower users with self-service tools that add business agility. Self-service analytics for rapid decision-making and process services that make it easy for users to modify workflows as business needs change will become more common across companies in the new year.

Chris Wiborg is VP of Product Marketing at Alfresco Software

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