Written on 8th December 2023 - 3 minutes

Understanding and implementing DevOps practices to improve software delivery pipelines

Understanding and implementing DevOps practices to improve software delivery pipelines

Dive into the dynamic world of DevOps with insights from our talented DevOps Apprentice, Eloise Wood. 

What do we mean by DevOps?

 

DevOps is a cultural approach to the software development process, emphasising communication and efficiency. Through this, we are trying to achieve:

  • Increased collaboration
  • Decreased isolated team working (or “Silos”)
  • Blameless culture, with everybody taking responsibility for the work
  • Teams that can work continuously without unnecessary interruption (e.g. validation steps)
  • Increased quality without sacrificing quantity, using automation wherever possible.
  • Shorter and more frequent feedback loops; valuing feedback from customers and colleagues

In order to understand and implement DevOps practices to improve software delivery pipelines, we must first understand DevOps Principles:

  • Collaboration
  • Communication
  • Transparency
  • Innovation
  • Freedom

A tool that can help us visualise these is the CALMS Framework:

Culture

Encourage shared responsibility and a blame-free approach

Automation

Making repetitive tasks less prone to human error; if a machine can do it, it should!

Lean

Reduce waste through streamlined processes

Measurement

Monitor and evaluate the process continuously

Sharing

Communication and collaboration is key

 

The DevOps Values are another important factor, as they are the cornerstones of the DevOps culture:

 

  • Customer-centric actions
  • End-to-end workflows
  • Shared Responsibility
  • Continuous Improvement
  • Automation
  • Embracing Failure

 

When DevOps practices are not adopted

 

In a world where digital transformation is reshaping industries, the absence of a DevOps culture in business often results in fragmented communication and disjointed workflows between development and operations teams. Without the orchestration that DevOps provides, the company may struggle with slower release cycles, increased human error and difficulties in adapting swiftly to evolving market demands.

 

A company that isn't using DevOps

 

A company that isn't using DevOps_ Developers vs Operations

Adopting DevOps practices

Here are some key points a business needs to embrace a DevOps culture:

Version Control

Utilise a version control system, Git is the industry standard, to manage and track changes in the codebase.

Continuous Integration (CI)

Implement CI pipelines to automatically build and test code changes when developers commit code. Platforms like Azure DevOps Pipelines or GitHub Actions can be used for CI.

Continuous Deployment (CD)

Extend your CI pipelines to include CD, automating the deployment process to testing and production environments. Leverage tools like Azure DevOps for deployment management.

Automated Testing

Catch bugs early by implementing automated testing at various levels (unit, integration, acceptance). Explore testing frameworks like Cypress.

Monitoring and Logging

Implement robust monitoring and logging solutions (e.g. Prometheus) to identify and address issues proactively.

Security Integration

Integrate security practices into the DevOps pipeline, incorporating static code analysis, dependency scanning, and regular security audits.

Collaboration Tools

Facilitate communication and collaboration among team members with collaboration tools like Microsoft Teams or Atlassian products like Jira or Trello.

Continuous Learning

Encourage a culture of continuous learning and improvement. Regularly review and refine processes based on feedback and performance metrics.

Feedback Loops

Establish feedback loops for internal and external teams to learn from incidents and continuously improve.

Documentation

Maintain comprehensive documentation for configurations, processes and procedures to ensure knowledge sharing and onboarding.

Scale Gradually

Start small and gradually scale DevOps practices across the organisation. Monitor the impact and adjust as needed.

A company using DevOps

At Software Solved, we adopt DevOps practices and apply them to all our client projects – utilising the latest cloud technologies to deliver the best results.

Get in contact today to discover the tools, principles, and benefits that can revolutionise your organisation’s approach to software development.

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