Business demand driving DevOps growth: survey

Thirty-five per cent of 75 Australian respondents say they are under pressure from their business to release applications quicker

The DevOps movement is growing in Australia according to a new survey, with IT departments feeling management pressure to release applications more quickly in order to meet customer demand.

DevOps aims to bridge the gap between developers who write code and system administrators who manage applications and the servers they run on.

The study, TechInsights Report: What smart businesses know about DevOps, was conducted by UK research firm Vanson Bourne on behalf of CA Technologies from May to July 2013.

A total of 1300 respondents including IT executives, project leads and enterprise architects from companies with revenues of US$100 million or more took part. Seventy-five IT pros from Australia participated

Thirty five per cent of Australian respondents indicated that there were pressures from the business to release applications more quickly to meet customer demand.

Almost half of the Australians who participated in the survey – 49 per cent – said they had adopted DevOps-style strategies to improve collaboration between development and operations.

CA Technologies Asia Pacific and Japan application delivery vice president Sumal Karunanayake told Techworld Australia that the pressure developers were under to release faster was not surprising.

“In this day and age, the speed by which you deliver applications or content means that IT staff have to deliver applications faster and without defects,” he said.

“They also have to strive for simultaneous [applications] releases, as opposed to linear releases. I think people are realising that if they don’t use DevOps they could lose competitive advantage."

Forty per cent of the respondents said that the top obstacles to implementing DevOps included people and organisational complexity. Another 33 per cent said that roles and responsibilities across development and operations were not aligned.

“DevOps is something that needs to be driven culturally within an organisation,” Karunanayake said “Typically, the development people are very technical and know how to write code. The operations people know how to run an application in a production environment.

“However, there is no one in the middle who understands the business requirement”

Karunanayake advised IT staff to look at their people, current processes, skill levels and understanding of business requirements.

Out of the Australian respondents who had already implemented DevOps, 73 per cent said that they would be investing in more training for development and operations personnel.

The top three skills needed for DevOps were knowledge of business priorities or metrics (57 per cent), knowledge of current business processes (45 per cent) and communication skills (35 per cent).

“We’re starting to see a significant increase in DevOps job postings,” said Karunanayake.

“Companies find that they have staff that can be repurposed into a DevOps function, but they also require more people with business acumen to be the conduit.”

Follow Hamish Barwick on Twitter: @HamishBarwick Follow Techworld Australia on Twitter: @Techworld_AU

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