DigiTech Magazine - US Summer 2017 - Page 22

LESSONS FROM APPLYING DEVOPS PRINCIPLES TO OUR AGILE APPLICATION DEVELOPMENT By Paul Welty We have learned a lot from DevOps, now firmly entrenched in the enterprise and in executives’ lexicon. An approach that breaks down traditional barriers between development and operations, it emphasizes flow, feedback and continuous improvement. In fact, IT operations run the risk of becoming a “critical bottleneck” if DevOps is not implemented, or if not implemented properly, Gartner research director Jason Wong argues. By eliminating the handoff between developers and operations, it facilitates rapid deployment of software. What really makes it work is not just the elimination of handoffs, but the drive toward a single team. When we think about it like this, there is an opportunity to take the concept further and apply these ideas to how we conceive, design and launch applications. Applying and extending DevOps principles to app strategy, design and adoption will allow you to realize significant benefits: • A single strategy, design, development and operations adoption team focused on a central mission • A structure that facilitates feedback to drive continuous improvement • A team that measures success by the app’s adoption. After all, whether an app is deployable and sustainable doesn’t matter at all if it doesn’t solve a user need and get adopted. Apple is a good example of this principle in action. Apple doesn’t “do” concept products; it only releases things that are producible at mass scale. What this means is that its teams are always thinking far down the product line: “What can we put in the hands of 10 million people?” It’s an approach that forces you to stay in touch with your users and think in terms of the adoption of your work. PUTTING DEVOPS INTO PRACTICE Here’s how DevOps-ifying application development played out on a recent project for an online news hub: • Ensured multiple sources of data to provide KPIs • Investigated anomalies • Formed new hypotheses based on anomalies • Created/deployed content, features and functionalities regularly based on learnings • Measured! There are a few key steps we’ve taken and helped some of our clients take to add DevOps principles to your entire application development process. In general, work backward up the value chain. 22 DIGITECH Magazine Summer 2017