Why DevOps is a culture, not a job title

In some circles, DevOps is considered the way forward for modern businesses and many converts will readily speak to its benefits. Despite this enthusiasm, there’s still some confusion as to what DevOps actually is. Is it a job role? A team? The throwing together of development and operations departments? The truth is, it’s none of the above. DevOps is a culture, a way of thinking, a mentality that needs to spread to every corner of an organisation if it’s to succeed.

Why is DevOps necessary?

In today’s increasingly digital world, many businesses have found themselves having to evolve their traditional operations to incorporate software development processes. Now, all major businesses utilise software that they’ve had to develop, test and implement themselves and which creates new problems and organisational difficulties in the process. One such difficulty is how to encourage the diverse range of teams involved in the process to coordinate and work together in an effective manner. DevOps attempts to solve this problem by providing a framework – a workplace culture – which enables greater collaboration.

DevOps throughout the workplace

We’ve made the important distinction that DevOps is a culture, not a specific role because it’s absolutely essential that it’s adopted and embraced by everyone involved if it’s to function well. As it’s a specific approach that helps businesses develop software quickly, roll it out and update it regularly, there’s no one person who can implement the changes required. Instead, DevOps should be thought of as a group mindset that needs to be rooted in every member of the business, from HR specialists to project managers to cybersecurity experts.

Metrics allow you to measure success

If you’re trying to build the case for implementing DevOps practices in your business, you’re going to need to demonstrate the business case for such a move. Fortunately, there’s a number of ways you can begin to measure the effects of DevOps practices. However, if you’re to use metrics as evidence, it’s necessary to concentrate on specific aspects of the process and to identify a particular focus for measurement.

For instance, you could measure velocity – whether software is being delivered to users at a faster rate. Or you could measure quality – whether you’re having fewer stability and security issues once the software is delivered. Likewise, you could also look at how the DevOps culture has affected the workplace by measuring communication, collaboration and innovation to see if they’ve improved. Without limiting your scope, it’s likely concrete evidence of improvement will be difficult to identify.

DevOps is a revolutionary force

DevOps is a game-changer for many businesses, precisely because it is a culture and not an individual job role. In the modern business environment, one person can only bring about so much change. However, a new culture that emphasises greater communication, collaboration, innovation and automation, can have an enormous impact. As the products that businesses deliver to users change, the processes by which the product is developed and delivered also need to change. DevOps allows businesses to adapt to the new demands of the marketplace by providing organisations with the structure and mentality they require to stay on top.

Written by Jamie Budgen, Head of DevOps & Cloud Recruitment at Capita