Electric Cloud: DevOps Predictions for 2017
January 06, 2017

Anders Wallgren
Electric Cloud

The following are 2017 predictions for DevOps from the executive team at Electric Cloud, covering Application Release Automation, Microservices and Containers, Continuous Testing, Secure DevOps and more:

Growing DevOps Adoption

Continued momentum for the growing adoption of DevOps, particularly by large enterprises – as the software delivery pipeline and maturity of the delivery process become key differentiators in the hyper-competitive and dynamic market today, which is largely driven by software innovation. The ROI of a DevOps transformation has been established, and companies now understand that in order to stay competitive they have to get better at delivering software – where DevOps comes in.
Steve Brodie, CEO of Electric Cloud

Application Release Automation Continues to Grow

Within this growing adoption of DevOps, Application Release Automation (ARA) is the hottest category that enterprises are focusing on. This focus on Release Automation is because both businesses and analysts believe this is the area where you can really get the most bang for your buck. In a 2015 Gartner Research DevOps survey of 338 IT business leaders, when asked about what was most important to their company’s DevOps success, the number one item was, by far, ARA. In fact, 60% percent of people pointed to ARA as being the most critical factor in achieving success for their organization’s DevOps initiatives.

Automation is a key enabler for faster, more frequent, deployments , while ensuring quality and service continuity, Gartner also estimates that by 2020, 50% of global enterprises will be adopting ARA. That means in the next three years, half of global enterprises will be turning to DevOps and ARA to fuel their software delivery lifecycle. The question is, will you be amongst them?
Steve Brodie, CEO of Electric Cloud

Consolidation Becomes Critical for Scale, Compliance, Utilization

As DevOps matures, large, complex organizations will focus on finding ways to consolidate and standardize their DevOps processes, tooling and implementation -- in order to scale DevOps throughout the organization (and save costs). To enable developers and an Agile way of working, while ensuring governance, system-level visibility, and organizational control - many are implementing a shared, self-service DevOps Automation platform to enable their end-to-end pipelines. Rather than investing in each team’s software delivery as a “snowflake” set-up, they invest in converging of all teams and applications around shared configurations, pipelines, environments, tooling, processes, security test, etc. This consolidation allows for reusability, improved visibility, security, auditability, and resource utilization - while still being flexible enough to support specific teams’ needs.
Steve Brodie, CEO of Electric Cloud

Microservices and Containers Will Drive Modern Application Delivery

With all these organizations making a change towards DevOps, microservices are a uniquely aligned architecture to help achieve success. This is because microservices enable organizations to architect their solutions around a set of decoupled services — that can each be developed and released independently. Each service focuses on doing just one thing, well, and enabling more rapid time to market, with less interdependencies, to reduce risk.

Going hand in hand with microservices, containers serve as an ideal deployment vehicle. That’s because containers are designed to run one isolated process, with minimal deployment and runtime overhead. What do the stats say about this? Gartner expects that by the end of 2018 50% of enterprises will be running containers in Production.
Anders Wallgren, CTO of Electric Cloud

Continuous Testing will be a big part of DevOps 3.0

Companies adopting DevOps will need to improve their ability to test and perform test automation. As part of that, test acceleration will be a key area of investment - as you start getting more and more automated test suites. The time it takes to run those test suites can be very long, so you’ll see ways of implementing some test acceleration capabilities that can radically reduce the amount of time for some of those tests.
Mohan Dattatreya, GM, Acceleration Solutions at Electric Cloud

Secure DevOps

You are going to see more security verification and more built-in compliance validation checks happening earlier in the lifecycle that are fully integrated with the development process.
Anders Wallgren, CTO of Electric Cloud

Big Data and DevOps come together to create predictive analytics throughout your delivery cycle

One massive thing DevOps tools have accomplished is automation — automating the process as well as automating the configuration. In these pipelines, you’re suddenly creating a ton of data. When you start applying machine learning to this, you can really start to hone in on some interesting data where you can predict failures and identify areas for optimization in your pipeline.
As this emerges a further, you’ll have the ability to set up policies as well. For instance, if something's going to deviate from this policy, you can reject a pipeline run automatically.
Steve Brodie, CEO of Electric Cloud

Supporting Hybrid-Everything

In this fragmented, dynamic and evolving market, organizations need to be ready to support a continued “hybrid” complex state of existence: for their infrastructure, architectures, tooling, processes, release pipelines, and so on. This is particularly true for large, complex organizations, who will need to continue to support monolithic/legacy applications alongside microservices; on premise alongside cloud infrastructure; VMs and containers; traditional application releases alongside CD-type pipelines, etc. This continued state of “hybrid-everything” poses challenges on large-scale operations, and will put continued emphasize on DevOps solutions and patterns that are “future-ready” to support any tool, technology stack, process, or application - in this hyper-hybrid state.
Anders Wallgren, CTO of Electric Cloud

Culture truly recognized as DevOps differentiator

Enterprises sometimes use the same orchestration platform, or a lot of the same tools, but the outcomes are radically different. The differentiator usually comes down to culture. So it's the people that espouse some of these cultural tenets, the shared responsibility, the truly empowered autonomous teams, the can-do attitude, continuous learning that are going to get the best benefits.
Steve Brodie, CEO of Electric Cloud

ITIL adapted for DevOps

We're going to see it accelerate. It will be automated, and what we expect to see is that instead of a change advisory board, it's going to move much more to an auditing model and automatic approval gates, where you're checking, "Did all the automated tests go through, instead of injecting a person in the middle of that?" 
Chris Fulton, Professional Services Engineer for Electric Cloud

Configuration Management discovery

Expect to see more discovery there to populate the configuration parameters. And also having the pipelines themselves actually generate the CM and CIs as part of that delivery process.
Anders Wallgren, CTO of Electric Cloud

EVOLUTION OF DEVOPS

Expect to see DevOps evolve to something that's really more Biz, Dev, Ops, Sec, and all other stakeholders in the organization. So collaborating with the business team, collaborating with the security team is going to be very important.
Steve Brodie, CEO of Electric Cloud

Anders Wallgren is CTO of Electric Cloud
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