What is DevOps? Key Skillsets & Principles

GettyImages-1449534407The term ‘DevOps’ has become a frequented buzzword. In 2023, the term 'DevOps' ranked among the most frequently searched IT phrases, with a monthly search volume hovering around 500K, as reported by Google Ads Keyword Planner. Although, DevOps is more than just a buzzword – it is a set of practices that merges development (Dev) and operations (Ops) aimed at shortening the software development life cycle. It’s core objectives center on automation, improved speed, reduced errors, and better-connected teams. Nowadays, DevOps is being seamlessly integrated into modern development practices for enterprises of all sizes. General sentiment overwhelmingly supports DevOps integration, as 99% of respondents in a Atlassian study reported a positive impact on their organization. As DevOps gains prominence, it’s critical you build an understanding of the principles and skillsets needed to implement it. This blog will help you achieve just that!


Defining DevOps: Olympic Analogy

Picture DevOps like a relay race at the Olympics. In this race, each runner represents a different stage in the software development process, from coding to testing to deployment.

Before the emergence of DevOps, it was as if each runner competed separately, passing the baton (the software) with uncertainty - often dropping the preverbal baton, resulting in delays and errors in the code. With DevOps, it's as if the relay team is bionic, perfecting their baton exchanges (automated processes and collaboration) and ensuring that each runner (development and operations) seamlessly hands off the baton to the next, resulting in a smoother and faster race (improved speed of software development and deployment).

In short, DevOps helps eliminate the fumbles, making the entire team work together efficiently, just like a well-coordinated relay team aiming for a gold medal.


Why is DevOps so important?

DevOps is an indispensable skillset for candidates today! According to Google – ‘77% of organizations say they currently rely on DevOps to deploy software, or plan to in the near future’ - illustrating the need for candidates today to acquire DevOps skills.

But why are companies today making a strong push to harness the potential of DevOps? Because DevOps is built on the core principles of enabling faster releases, minimizing errors, and fostering synergy between development and operations teams. The methodology has helped bridge the gap between teams, fundamentally changing how organizations deliver applications and services.

Organizations that rely on DevOps principles are actively establishing a competitive edge over organizations that rely on antiquated practices – explaining why organizations are purposefully seeking out candidates that have a grasp of DevOps.


What kind of DevOps skills are companies looking for in a candidate today?

Companies today are increasingly seeking candidates with a baseline understanding of DevOps fundamentals over those with a nuanced comprehension of distinct DevOps tools or procedures. Why? Because new and improved DevOps tools are emerging at a rapid pace – triggering organizations to locate candidates willing to learning new tools on the job.

Let’s be clear - this is not meant to diminish the importance of already having technical proficiency, but rather clarify that organizations today are looking for candidates willing to embrace new technologies. The importance of learning new technologies on the fly is illustrated here, as 78% of individuals reported the need to acquire a new skill upon the introduction of DevOps to their organization.

The tools of today will quickly become yesterdays. For now, these are the DevOps tools you should be targeting.


Configuration - Puppet, Chef, Ansible, Terraform

Cloud Services - AWS, Azure, Google Cloud

Containerization - Kubernetes, Docker, OpenShift

Version control - Git, Gitlab, Bitbucket

Automation testing - Selenium, Docker, Appium, Jenkins, Apache, Cucumber  


As DevOps evolves to become more than just a tool for enhanced development pace – professionals should evaluate how new tools align with the industry or market segment to yield the optimal results for the company.


Final Thoughts

DevOps is primed for immense growth, projected to grow at a 19.7% compound annual growth (CAGR) over the next half-decade according to Research Linker - as it quickly becomes a cornerstone of modern software development. For organizations striving to innovate, a commitment to onboard DevOps experts is a necessity! If your organization is looking to introduce elite DevOps talent reach out to us here.


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