Don’t Forget These Points in Your DevOps Transformation

To promote its adoption and implementation, it is essential to consider some crucial points in the DevOps transformation of your company.

DevOps is a working methodology widely used today, combining good development (Dev) and operations (Ops) practices to deliver value to customers continuously. Adopting this methodology generally requires a multi-level restructuring (human, process, and technological).

To promote its adoption and implementation, it is essential to consider some crucial points in the DevOps transformation of your company.

Be Aligned With The Business Goals

Today, DevOps, DecSecOps, MLOps, FinOps, etc., are notable trends. These acronyms are beautiful on paper and make us want to apply them when we see their results in contexts outside our own. However, it is essential to keep in mind that a DevOps transformation requires an investment of time, resources, and money from the company. Therefore, it is normal for any company first to understand the benefits of this transformation. Tracking trends is not required to achieve revenue, so it is essential to correlate the DevOps transformation goals with the business goals to ensure project adoption.

Encourage Team Collaboration

The success of a DevOps transformation is primarily based on the collaboration of the other development, operations, security, etc. teams to identify at the enterprise, group, and process-level (automation, deployment, communication, etc.) improvement points and jointly define a coherent roadmap to respond quickly to the identified needs of each. A culture of collaboration and good communication between team members leaves less chance of mistakes and failures.

Break the walls between the teams to spread the information, make better decisions, and encourage a sense of belonging to an open-minded, efficient team that allows and encourages sharing ideas.

Alone, you will go fast; together, you will go far.

Understand the Existing

This is important as it is not recommended to start a transformation without understanding how the business, teams, and processes work. It is essential to understand the existing to identify areas for improvement and the efforts needed to make them a reality.

Also, remember to collect metrics from the current architecture:

  • Number of deployments per day, week, month

  • Application deployment time

  • Time required to onboard a new employee

  • Level of infrastructure automation

  • Ability of resources to manage new demand

Get as much data as possible to measure the level of progress of the transformation and its benefits of it vis-à-vis the announced objectives.

There are many ways to achieve transformation which require investments that must be measured and prioritized based on the knowledge of the current infrastructure.

Accept That Failures Are Inevitable

There is more than one way to transform your organization to DevOps successfully. Failure is the key to success, even in your career, because it allows you and your teammates to learn and grow. 

As mentioned in the previous section, a collaborative culture allows for the emergence and sharing of many ideas that need to be evaluated and sometimes tested. The company must accept the risk of investing in specific ideas and hope to see its benefit. It is utopian to think that everything can be realized or imagined ideally at first sight.

The DevOps culture requires thinking further and keeping an open mind to change by constantly asking if there may be another way of looking at things. Failure is a transitory passage that prepares you for your next success.

Define Small Objectives

A DevOps transformation takes a lot of time and resources. Therefore, it is necessary to define overall objectives that can be achieved at a time appropriate to the context of the enterprise. It is essential to complete these objectives to measure the level of progress of the transformation and its benefits before moving on to the next ones.

It is recommended to define small targets first to quickly promote the start-up and adoption of the project to meet the most critical goals. Setting up this type of project management will allow you to develop a productive and flexible corporate culture to address more critical issues.

Choose the Right Tools to Encourage Automation

In a DevOps ecosystem, automation is everyone’s business. Each team develops and uses automated systems to speed up and facilitate their work at different levels. Therefore, choosing the right tools is essential to increase the productivity, resilience, and security of the architecture, teams, and processes.

The DevOps culture must bring some flexibility in the choice of tools, but it is still advisable to define a stable base on which all or a large part of the company’s processes can be based.

This transformation, therefore, requires the integration of several automation tools to meet several prerequisites such as:

  • Manage infrastructure (on-premises as on the Cloud)

  • Automate security, performance, code quality tests

  • Deploy and configure any application

  • Lint the code

  • Enforce policies

Observe Everything

Observability is an essential part of a DevOps transformation. Even before the start of the project, it is advisable to collect metrics to measure the progress of change.

Observability must be at several levels:

  • The Operation team must monitor all deployed environments and resources, even external third-party components, and be proactive in the event of a problem.

  • The Development team needs to profile their applications and ensure a good level of logging and tracing to identify issues quickly.

  • The Finance team needs to monitor infrastructure costs (especially in the cloud) to control expenses and advise engineering on potential improvements.

  • The Client Success team needs to gather information and report on customer feedback to determine process improvements.

  • The Project Management team must measure the progress of the transformation and its benefits on the company's various projects.

Don’t think that observability is just a matter of operations engineer; everyone has a role to play in a DevOps transformation.

Define Performance Standards

This section follows the idea from the previous point. Once the observability is in place, it will be time to think like a site reliability engineer, a database reliability engineer, a person from the security team, and even a developer to identify and implement standards that will measure and understand the performance of the entire infrastructure.

Reaching these standards over a given period defines the progress of your DevOps transformation. These standards generally define the company’s overall objectives regarding this transformation and must be divided into several small projects to facilitate their adoption.

Accelerate the Time to Market

The emergence of new ways of working, such as DevOps, agility, and cloud infrastructures, has accelerated the competitiveness of companies in the market. Today, it is even more necessary to align the engineering teams with the sales teams to prioritize the deployment of new features in production to differentiate themselves from these competitors and thus attract new customers.

To do this, it is essential to accelerate the “Time To Market” by deploying to production as quickly as possible while guaranteeing the reliability of the system and building trust in the automation of the processes. Achieving this requires automated strategies adopted by the development teams and a review of the application architecture to limit dependencies between applications (like microservices). Setting a deployment date to putting several interdependent applications of their version into production is not the purpose of DevOps and does not contribute to the company's competitiveness.

Improve the Reliability of Your Applications

A DevOps migration must bring some visibility to your applications. This visibility is driven by the observability of applications throughout their life cycle and the addition of risk control processes in automated pipelines.

This requires an update of the governance of the IT through the introduction of tools and processes that will improve the quality management of the code developed by the teams. These control steps are essential for specific certifications (SOC, GDPR, HIPAA, etc.) required by companies. Therefore, it is necessary to introduce the DevSecOps principles early in the DevOps migration.

Adopt a Cloud-Native Approach Before Moving to the Cloud

The Cloud is an essential component in the DevOps world because it brings the flexibility that many companies are looking for to be competitive in the market. For many, it isn't easy to cost and plan a migration of their infrastructure to a cloud platform. This requires a good understanding of the current architecture, constraints, and raison d'être to define the appropriate cloud provider and the target architecture. This requires time, advanced knowledge of cloud services, and rigorous project management to ensure a timely migration.

Depending on the complexity of this migration, adopting an approach to a cloud-native environment is highly recommended. Several platforms allow this same management flexibility to static environments, such as on-premise architecture. Adopting these platforms (such as Kubernetes) will enable us to work upstream to visualize better and plan a migration to any provider.

Control Your Expenses With a FinOps Team

As mentioned in this article, DevOps transformation has a cost in human resources, time, and thus, money. Introducing FinOps principles is a good practice to measure a DevOps transformation. It can even be seen as a level of maturity as it asks for multiple teams (operations, development, finance, security, etc.) to work together to control the cost throughout the project.

This team collaboration makes it possible to optimize the costs of a transformation as soon as possible, thus reinforcing the executive's confidence in the ability of the teams to manage their finances.

Think of Other Areas Like MLOps

DevOps has changed a lot in the way we work. This methodology has added many advantages to our way of managing our architects, applications, and integration. Therefore, it is normal to see a move toward other areas such as machine learning platform management in recent years.

Considered an extension of the DevOps world, the MLOps is today the daily life of many engineers whose goal is to optimize the platform management once considered complex.

These platforms, which are now the heart of many companies, require different management processes than traditional web applications while having similarities. These workflows must also be automated, tested, deployed, and monitored like any application managed by the DevOps methodology.

Move to Serverless

Serverless is not necessarily a component of DevOps culture. Nevertheless, its use brings many benefits and fits perfectly into this movement even if the management of such architecture requires processes sometimes different from other applications.

This type of architecture requires more significant involvement of developers in the life cycle management of the serverless application while reducing (without removing) the responsibility of operations to ensure its proper functioning.

Therefore, this type of application requires a good cohesion of teams to deploy and maintain the service in production. The simplicity of the architecture management of this type of infrastructure also makes it possible to accelerate the DevOps transformation of a process, workflow, or application.

Continuously Learn

DevOps is a game changer every day, with new tools, new processes, new ways of working, etc. So it’s essential to keep your knowledge up to date or challenge what you’ve learned with the latest trends. This often allows you to find points of comparison and optimization in your daily work.

As explained at the beginning of this article, sharing is the key to success, so it is essential to have a communication channel with all teams to share and exchange ideas or resources.

Keep In Mind That DevOps Is Not Just a Role

Over time, the interpretation and use of the word DevOps have evolved. Today, it has been democratized to define a role, a team (which can be paradoxical), or even a part of the infrastructure. But we must remember that this is, above all, a way to review the working methodology of a company to promote communication between teams, the automation of recurring processes, the supervision of the entire infrastructure, the development of a flexible culture to provide customers with an optimal user experience and thus stand out in an increasingly competitive market.

Therefore, the DevOps methodology is a current trend, transitioning towards a new way of working more adapted to a new generation of work tools. Like any transition, it must have an end, not become a project with no end date.


As explained in this article, a transformation to DevOps methodology is not an end but the beginning of a long journey. The evolution of working methods brings us constantly new tools and processes to facilitate our daily tasks and foster our team collaboration.

DevOps has changed a lot of companies, teams, and people but is now challenged by a new practice called NoOps that introduces another way of thinking about collaboration and automation. But this will be for a future article; stay tuned!

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