Development

Debunking DevOps #6-Automation Deployment

This is the last blog in a series exploring some common DevOps misconceptions. Break past the myths to get the most from your DevOps strategy.

Read myths #1, #2, #3, #4, and #5.

Myth #6: Automation deployment clears your bottlenecks

By adopting technical tools like Cloudbees Jenkins, the IT organization will be able to automate everything. There will no longer be repetitive manual tasks for IT to complete. Instead, all they will have to do is monitor your automated processes.

The truth? Automation helps simplify processes and make them more reliable, repeatable, faster, and more efficient. Manual tasks exist because they will require humans to make decisions, parse results, and reason with non-binary data. Automation requires humans to solve these problems. Then they can be codified into algorithms, heuristics, and thresholds that can make informed decisions. But, automation deployment will not instantly clear every bottleneck your organization faces.

The Process

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The amount of technical debt that organizations have is normally non-trivial. Plenty of tools are needed to provide a technical foundation around your standard delivery workflows. They include static code checks, build, package, unit test, deployment, secrets management, environment configuration, test data management, integration/performance/functional testing, and coordination between dependent systems.

Once you’ve established your automation capabilities, you can begin the next level of maturity. This next stage is automating organizational governance processes. At this point, you should have successfully cleared your initial technical debt and your foundation for automating the technical aspects of software delivery. This includes continuous integration, automated packaging/versioning, deployment, test data management, regression testing, and integration/functional testing.

The goal is to automate the sign-off, gating, and validation of releases. Technical debt at this stage is generally split. Automating the process of governing deployable artifacts gets you to a point where you’re having a high-value discussion that will directly impact the ability of your organization to reach continuous delivery. However, you will still have manual decisions and tasks to make, and you won’t be able to automate everything to clear your bottlenecks.

Why even adopt a DevOps strategy?

Organizations shouldn’t think of DevOps as just improving the workflow around development and operations. Instead, think of it as part of an overall agile transformation of your IT.

Adopting DevOps will streamline business-critical IT processes, help you migrate legacy systems, and adopt new technologies, but you need a plan to successfully implement it. Implementing a DevOps strategy is a process, but once you’re on the other side, you will have closed any skills gaps, established new processes, and adopted tools that work for you.

Learn more to arm yourself from being misled about DevOps. Download our guide and get started debunking DevOps myths.

 

About the Author

Caitlin is the Marketing Coordinator for Perficient's Automation, DevOps, and API practices. She's been in her role since September 2019, and has a background in editing and writing for a variety of brands and publications. She lives in St. Louis and is a proud St. Louis Blues fan.

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