DevOps: From Theory Into Practice
October 10, 2013
Shridhar Mittal

Today’s mobile-connected consumers have more power of choice than ever before and a digital loudspeaker with which to make their voices heard. And they have four big demands: newer, faster, cheaper, and better.

The pressure for enterprises is growing. Across every sector – from banking to telco to retail – IT is expected to deliver higher quality applications faster. Releasing a new application every one to two years is no longer good enough. Yet, IT budget remains the same or is lower than the previous year. For these reasons, application development is at the core of delivering the kind of enhanced customer experience and brand loyalty that can set a business apart from the competition and increase sales.

It may seem like an impossible task, but smart IT organizations can optimize application delivery and accelerate innovation by embracing DevOps.

DevOps is a method of developing software built upon the idea that developers and IT operations professionals should communicate and collaborate in order to speed the delivery of new business services. A recent survey commissioned by CA Technologies reveals that nearly all (99 percent) senior IT decision-makers in the US recognize the need for a DevOps strategy now, more than ever before. But it is consumers – not necessarily IT – that are driving the major push for DevOps strategies.

The need to improve the end-customer experience is the number one DevOps driver in the US (68 percent). In fact, the consumer force is so strong that other business and technology reasons for implementing DevOps are left in the dust. Solving for the complexity of IT systems and cost-cutting are the bottom of the list (7 percent and 2 percent, respectively) for IT professionals in the US.

This trend towards consumer-driven IT transformation is worldwide; 41 percent of global survey respondents recognize that “meeting customer demands for quick release of apps” and “entering new markets” are two of the major factors to implement DevOps.

Why the recent increase in interest in DevOps? We’ve reached a tipping point where the external pressures in a world of mobile apps and online consumer reviews are too strong to ignore. Businesses around the world are waking up to the reality that DevOps is more than just the latest IT buzzword; it’s a driver for tangible business benefits.

According to the survey, companies with a DevOps strategy have achieved a 22 percent increase in customers and 20 percent faster time-to-market for new services. Interestingly, the majority of DevOps adopters say they have experienced an increase in revenue.

The benefits of DevOps are clear and adoption is on the rise. The survey also reveals that a large majority of respondents plan to increase investments in technologies, tools, training and headcount to make the transformation. Nearly three-fourths of respondents (73 percent) anticipate investing in new tools due to their DevOps implementation. More than 70 percent expect to commit more budget to training both development and operations staff on the tenets of DevOps. And more than half (53 percent) foresee having to hire new personnel with the necessary skills to support a DevOps adoption.

It is clear that the conventional methods of developing and deploying applications are not good enough for the mobile era. Companies have a lot to gain by embracing DevOps to help transform their IT organization. As more organizations move in this direction, DevOps will continue to evolve from the theoretical into a winning strategic approach for all businesses.

Survey Methodology: Vanson Bourne conducted the CA Technologies-sponsored study of 1300 senior IT decision-makers in financial services, healthcare, manufacturing, public sector and telecommunications in 21 countries around the world in May through July 2013. The study’s respondents assume IT executive, management, project lead or enterprise architect positions at enterprises with revenues of $100 million or more.

ABOUT Shridhar Mittal

Shridhar Mittal is GM, Application Delivery, CA Technologies, responsible for driving the company’s mission to help enterprises deliver innovative new software and services to market without constraints: better, faster and more cost efficiently than their competition. Mittal comes to CA Technologies as a result of the ITKO acquisition. As CEO at ITKO, he guided the company into a strong position across the highly specialized Service Oriented Architecture (SOA) field.

Before joining ITKO in 2005, Mittal held several key management roles during a 10-year tenure at i2, including CMO, SVP and GM of the High-Tech Business Unit and VP of eBusiness solutions. Mittal is a native of India and received a Bachelor of Arts degree in mechanical engineering from the University of New Delhi. A holder of multiple patents, he has also earned a master's degree in industrial engineering from the State University of New York, Buffalo and has a doctorate in industrial engineering from Purdue University.

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