DevOps for CX Cleans Up Continuous Delivery Processes
August 23, 2021

James Isaacs
Cyara

Customer experiences (CXs) are a key focus for many organizations, especially as the definition of a positive CX has changed in the era of e-commerce, two-day deliveries, and on-demand streaming services. Customers' expectations are higher than ever before, with 85% of buyers claiming they'd happily pay more for a better CX. On top of that, brand loyalty is fickle these days, as 33% of customers will abandon a brand after just one bad experience, and nearly all consumers (92%) will do the same after just a couple of bad experiences. While first impressions are still important, it's the second, third, fourth, and subsequent impressions that will show a customer their ongoing experience matters to your brand.

When it comes to software development, which can move at break-neck speeds against tight delivery deadlines, the customer experience is just as paramount as with any other B2C or B2B interaction. DevOps for CX practices allow companies that deliver technology solutions and services to avoid sacrificing the experience of their customers, while still meeting ambitious delivery deadlines.

While DevOps for CX is a practice that supports development teams where CX and quality are of the highest priorities, there are key mistakes that must be avoided to ensure successful adoption of DevOps for CX.

Understanding DevOps for CX

Adopting DevOps for CX simply refers to applying the DevOps software methodology to CX software development, with the intention of developer software with greater efficiency and quality. Organizations undergoing digital transformation have made continuous delivery (CD) a priority as they develop new product features and capabilities.

Continuous delivery of new products and features places tight timelines on development initiatives. However, when developing customer-service software and products for CX, quality cannot be compromised in favor of faster development. But DevOps teams must still meet deadlines set by department and company leaders. So, how do companies continue to meet customer demands for rapid innovations on tight deadlines, without sacrificing the customer's experience?

The customer's perspective must always be the primary consideration for developers when building new products or features that are intended to improve CX. This means understanding the various ways a product might be used by customers, depending on the goals they're trying to accomplish. Continuous testing and monitoring in real-time, as well as significant attention to user experience (UX) design, as products are developed is key to ensuring that any potential issues are identified before the customer can experience them. Thus, deadlines are met while simultaneously providing a positive CX with the final product.

How to Overcome DevOps for CX Challenges

Under Investment in Executive Sponsorship and Cultural Evolution

Establishing a leader, who has the authority to drive and control organizational initiatives, is crucial to the success of any CX transformation initiative. For most organizations, an executive leader is necessary because CX transformations are an enterprise-wide operation that encompasses marketing, sales, services, and development.

Which company leader takes on this responsibility can vary depending on the organization. Some companies decide to charge an existing COO, CIO or CMO with the responsibility of leading CX initiatives, while others establish an entirely new position for the role. The exact title of the person charged with leading CX isn't important, what's important is that they have a broad authority over budget, people and processes to ensure CX initiatives are followed through to fruition.

Competing & Misaligned Incentives

Any initiative surrounding DevOps processes requires multiple teams' participation and coordination to execute effectively. Multiple teams can't work together very well when they're working to accomplish different goals.

CX transformation leaders must work with each team involved in DevOps for CX transformation to ensure their team has relevant objectives that match their areas of expertise, but do not interrupt or oppose other teams' objectives either. Developing functional team objectives with customer satisfaction in mind will guide CX transformation efforts.

Unclear Performance Indicators (KPIs)

Along with clear, unobtrusive goals, specific performance KPIs must be adopted to measure the success of any transformation initiative. It's important the KPIs for each team involved in CX transformation are widely distributed. This allows CX to be viewed at an operational level.

As software development must constantly be monitored to identify issues, KPIs must also be continuously monitored to ensure that teams are not experiencing issues achieving KPIs and to rectify any problems with cross-team collaboration.

Dependence on Heroic Efforts

DevOps practitioners are notorious for working late into the night and spending long hours in development to meet deadlines. But it doesn't have to be this way.

The easiest way to provide a negative CX is by providing a negative employee experience (EX). Poor EX is simply unsustainable, as employees will leave to find more satisfying work opportunities elsewhere, and inevitably results in unhappy employees who won't take pride in delivering positive CX. Avoiding unplanned work and rework is critical to a positive DevOps EX, and can be achieved by deploying automated testing at each stage of the development lifecycle.

Different Configurations Across CX Delivery Environments

As code progresses through the software lifecycle, it enters different environments for development, quality assurance, staging and production. Because the environments are configured differently, switching back and forth between these environments can be incredibly time consuming and frustrating for developers.

Leveraging deployment automation to establish a consistent approach to solutions and environments allows DevOps teams to avoid wasting time fixing bugs that suddenly appear as the code progresses to a new environment.

Errors Introduced by Manual or Outdated Processes

Unplanned work and rework is often the result of human error, which is introduced to DevOps by manual processes that cause delays and defects. Automating the testing of CX systems enables DevOps teams to catch defects caused by manual processes and avoids the delays and opportunities for error caused by manual testing. This provides more time post-testing for developers to adjust code to meet product requirements and ensure a positive CX.

DevOps for CX Enables Organizational CX Transformation

Continuously delivering high-quality software and products is a priority for many organizations as they and their customers pursue digital transformation initiatives. Adopting DevOps for CX practices enables companies to innovate rapidly, while ensuring that the final product meets customer expectations. When implementing DevOps for CX, be sure to follow the guidance in this article to avoid easily made mistakes and ensure the success of organizational CX transformation.

James Isaacs is President of Cyara
Share this

Industry News

December 06, 2022

The Cloud Native Computing Foundation® (CNCF®), which builds sustainable ecosystems for cloud native software, announced the graduation of Argo, which will join other graduated projects such as Kubernetes, Prometheus, and Envoy.

December 06, 2022

Wib announced API PenTesting-as-a-Service (PTaaS) designed to help organizations proactively cover the latest PCI-DSS 4.0 mandates for testing application security, APIs, and vulnerabilities in Business Logic.

December 05, 2022

Harness announced Harness Cluster Orchestrator to allow customers to optimize their Kubernetes cloud workload costs and realize up to 90% cloud cost savings with Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2) Spot instances from Amazon Web Services (AWS).

December 01, 2022

Salesforce introduced a new Automation Everywhere Bundle to accelerate end-to-end workflow orchestration, automate across any system, and embed data and AI-driven workflows anywhere.

December 01, 2022

Weaveworks announced that Flux, the original GitOps project, has graduated in the Cloud Native Computing Foundation (CNCF®).

December 01, 2022

Tigera announced enhancements to its cluster mesh capabilities for managing multi-cluster environments with Calico.

December 01, 2022

CloudBees achieved the Amazon Web Service (AWS) Service Ready Program for Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2) Spot Instances.

November 30, 2022

GitLab announced the limited availability of GitLab Dedicated, a new way to use GitLab - as a single-tenant software as a service (SaaS) solution.

November 30, 2022

Red Hat announced an expansion of its open solutions publicly available in AWS Marketplace.

November 30, 2022

Sisense announced the availability of the Sisense CI/CD Git integration module.

November 29, 2022

Codenotary announced TrueSBOM for Serverless, a self-updating Software Bill of Materials (SBOM) for applications running on AWS Lamda, Google Cloud Functions and Microsoft Azure Functions that is made possible by simply adding one line to the application source code.

November 29, 2022

Code Intelligence announced its open-source Command-Line Interface (CLI) tool, CI Fuzz CLI, now allows Java developers to easily incorporate fuzz testing into their existing JUnit setup in order to find functional bugs and security vulnerabilities at scale.

November 29, 2022

Parasoft announced the 2022.2 release of Parasoft C/C++test with support for MISRA C:2012 Amendment 3 and a draft version of MISRA C++ 202x.

November 28, 2022

Kasm Technologies announced the release of Kasm Workspaces v1.12, providing major enhancements to its portfolio of digital workspaces delivering Desktop as a Service (DaaS), Virtualized Desktop Infrastructure (VDI), Remote Browser Isolation (RBI), Open-Source Intelligence Collection (OSINT), Training/Sandboxes, and Containerized Application Streaming (CAS).

November 28, 2022

Cloud4C has achieved Amazon Web Services (AWS) DevOps Competency status.