DevOps continues to gain in popularity as more enterprises derive benefits, including faster deployment of apps, increased collaboration, greater use of apps by employees and customers and improved apps quality and performance, from this software development method.
The growing demand for DevOps solutions has spurred increased spending on DevOps toolsets, Gartner said last year. But the research firm noted that DevOps is about a lot more than technology:
DevOps represents a change in IT culture, focusing on rapid IT service delivery through the adoption of agile, lean practices in the context of a system-oriented approach. DevOps emphasizes people (and culture), and seeks to improve collaboration between operations and development teams.
All of which is to say that while the tools matter — we are talking about IT and programming, after all — it’s the skills and teamwork that determine whether an enterprise can launch a strong DevOps program.
So what kind of in-house DevOps skills do enterprises need? Not surprisingly, they need to know how to use certain technologies, as Linux.com writes, including:
- Configuration management tools (particularly Ansible, Chef, and Puppet)
- OpenStack cloud platform
- Programming languages (especially Ruby, Python, Java and Perl)
Sounds like a typical geekfest, right? Not any more.
Above and beyond tech chops, enterprises need something much more important to leverage DevOps:
“Soft skills are the most in-demand attributes of a DevOps candidate,” according to DEVOPSdigest. “Practice clear communication, collaboration and flexibility.”
Clear communication is essential to effective collaboration, but it’s a real challenge to find common language when collaborating across divisions and business units, each of which has their own perspective and terminology.
Since DevOps relies so heavily on automation to achieve efficiency and scale, there’s another kind of soft “skill” that enterprises should find invaluable.
“What we always look for in engineers is the good kind of lazy,” Logicworks CTO Jason McKay tells diginomica’s Jon Reed. “The engineer that doesn’t like to do something uninspiring and uninteresting, and so has simply automated that job away.”
Doing this frees up that clever engineer to dive into a high-value, high-impact project that enables the business. And that’s really the ultimate benefit of DevOps: Freeing up valuable resources (employees) to focus on implementing enterprise business strategies and achieving specific goals.
Does your enterprise have the right DevOps chops?