Software development organizations have long been relying on DevOps processes and tools to improve the speed and efficiency with which they bring releases to market. But with increasing pressure to embrace cloud and drive digital transformation, can traditional DevOps keep up with the pace of change?
Read to learn why traditional DevOps processes must make way for CloudOps to meet evolving business and customer needs; how the two concepts differ from each other; the challenges associated with CloudOps; and the best practices that can help you achieve the best results.
What is DevOps?
DevOps bridges traditional software development silos by encouraging constant and effective communication and collaboration between teams responsible for business analysis, development, testing and operations.
These practices and procedures allow the teams to test, iterate and deploy higher-quality, adaptive applications across the SDLC, so project goals align with the company’s – and customers’ - goals and objectives. Not only does DevOps accelerate time-to-market and increase profitability, but it can also contribute to an enterprise culture of continuous improvement.
What is CloudOps?
CloudOps is a way of doing DevOps, where instead of using on-site data centers, it leverages the power of cloud computing to augment DevOps capabilities. CloudOps allows development teams to seamlessly manage and provision cloud resources and more easily keep up with delivery timelines and quality expectations. By bringing massive technical improvements to DevOps practices, CloudOps paves the way for increased productivity and more beneficial development outcomes. Since different teams working in different locations can collaborate and view activities in a single-pane-of-glass, they can monitor the progress of their project, enable automation, and ensure security, all while operating on the principles of continuous feedback, improvement and delivery.
DevOps vs CloudOps - How Are They Different?
Although both DevOps and CloudOps seek to ensure continuous and quality development of software applications, they also differ in many aspects:
Compared to cloud computing platforms, on-premise systems and infrastructure offer limited capabilities for scaling traditional DevOps processes, often leading to additional investments in hardware and resources. In contrast, CloudOps enables seamless scaling up or down of required resources based on the demand and business needs. This agility provides a major competitive advantage in today’s disruptive market environments.
With traditional DevOps processes, teams must constantly monitor the underlying tools and infrastructure and make changes to ensure high availability. But that’s not the case with CloudOps. Teams that embrace CloudOps automatically enjoy high levels of availability, as the contracted cloud provider is committed to ensuring systems work to their full potential around-the-clock.
- Backup and Recovery
To enable redundancy and seamless disaster recovery, DevOps teams need to set up a separate DR center and have the necessary policies and strategies in place to provide timely backup in the event of business disruption or disaster. With CloudOps, backup and recovery are already in place. All data and processes are regularly replicated across multiple environments, ensuring little or no interruptions or downtime which, according to Gartner, can cost up to $5,600 per minute.
The performance of traditional DevOps processes is restricted by the server and network capacity in the data center. On the other hand, with CloudOps, teams can increase or decrease computing power based on demand, and ensure their tools and systems deliver the highest performance 24x7.
With traditional DevOps, accessibility is limited by onsite infrastructure and applications, so teams can only access data and applications when they are in physical proximity. With CloudOps, teams can access data and resources from anywhere, at any time, using any device, thus enjoying higher levels of productivity and efficiency.
While traditional DevOps offers somewhat limited automation and control capabilities across development and testing, CloudOps empowers teams with higher levels and degrees of automation - from provisioning and configuration to development, testing, governance, and more – all while creating robust, repeatable processes for quicker development and delivery outcomes.
Reliance on on-premises tools and heterogeneous systems can drive up the costs of traditional DevOps projects. Not only do teams have to allocate budgets for day-to-day management and upkeep, but they may also have to invest in expensive infrastructure to meet evolving development requirements. CloudOps, on the other hand, uses a pay-per-use model that drastically brings down CapEx, while also streamlining OpEx through the SaaS-based model. Teams do not have to worry about managing or monitoring their infrastructure, as (almost) everything is taken care of by the cloud provider.
Challenges Associated With CloudOps
Embracing CloudOps comes with both benefits and challenges:
- Unmanaged Costs
Since the cloud makes it extremely easy for development teams to spin up new instances, budget overruns can become a problem. As with all cloud computing, idle or unused resources can lead to inefficiencies, money wasted, and poor returns, which is why it is important to constantly monitor usage and drive efforts towards optimizing costs.
- Security Risks
Although modern cloud infrastructure is built on a strong foundation of security, the onus of implementing the right controls is entirely on the business customer. Having proper security configurations in place and investing in the right security tools is critical to keeping the development organization secure.
- Poor Governance
The ability to quickly and easily deploy updated or new resources in the cloud also leads to governance and compliance challenges. Rapid deployment pressures often put governance in the back seat. The only way to avoid these risks is to create and implement the right policies, continuously monitor and manage changes in cloud activity, and make adjustments whenever and wherever necessary.
Best Practices to Adopt CloudOps
Once you decide to integrate CloudOps into your development strategy, it makes sense to keep a few best practices in mind:
- Develop a robust cloud strategy and thoroughly weigh the costs, risks, and challenges of embracing the cloud.
- Understand the changes you will have to make to your existing tools and processes and have strong change management policies in place.
- Educate and train your teams on the benefits of CloudOps and how best they can make use of the cloud to improve their DevOps outcomes.
- Set up processes that allow for greater flexibility, agility, and speed of development operations.
- Enable access to the automated tools and technologies teams need to drive better outcomes – without worrying about implementing or managing those tools.
- Establish the required security and governance policies across projects to ensure consistency as your business needs change and grow.
CloudOps opens the doors to a variety of benefits for modern teams looking to enhance the performance, availability, reliability, scalability, and efficiency with which they develop and deploy software products and applications. But remember, just adopting CloudOps isn’t enough. You need to constantly evaluate your processes and procedures to identify improvements, ensure accessibility, and optimize productivity.
Check out our related PDF: Cloudops vs DevOps