Benefits of DevOps for Digital Transformation

Dev Ops-921942-edited.jpg
Editor's Note: Implementing DevOps can help software companies meet their clients’ digital transformation needs by enabling quicker deployments and smaller software releases. 
In the past, financial institutions’ development and management of new software releases has been a long, tedious process that could take months or even years to complete. IT teams were tasked with creating all of the code for the latest update, and testing it for any bugs or fixes. If anything needed to be changed, IT would then have to go back in to fix any bugs while not disrupting anything that was initially working.
Thankfully, new processes have been developed, such as the development and operations (DevOps) approach that enable IT teams to more easily and quickly create the code and test it as they go. Beyond the operational efficiencies to be gained, here are three additional key benefits to financial institutions that leverage DevOps:

More Frequent Deployments

One of the key benefits of the DevOps philosophy is a focus on efficiency, which translates into the ability to develop new solutions faster using an iterative approach common to agile methodologies. A critical aspect of DevOps is the involvement of both the development and operations team members throughout the process.

Using development methodologies, such as waterfall, software is periodically updated and maintained. Generally speaking, these updates are scheduled around quarterly, semi-annual or even annual releases. The intent of these release schedules is to enable software companies to better keep pace with financial institutions’ evolving business needs, but in some cases, it has also enabled banks’ competition to beat them to market if they are able to provide their updates quicker.

To counter this, when DevOps is combined with one of the agile methodologies, such as Scrum, KanbanTM, or XPTM, it enables software companies to release smaller solution updates on a continual basis. This deployment cycle allows clients to achieve lead times of truly astounding rates compared to those using traditional methods. Some reports estimate the lead time gap to be in excess of 2500 times faster than that of companies not using DevOps and Agile methods.

Smaller Releases

In today’s age of digital transformation, all of our critical systems rely on some form of IT infrastructure and sadly, many of these systems are decades old and are in constant need of maintenance. This is problematic as failure of any system can have grave consequences, ranging from loss of revenue, diminished reputation, or loss of client trust.

Studies show that software companies following DevOps principles have a reduced rate of failure while their recovery times are – on average – more than 20 times faster than companies that use traditional approaches. The reduction of errors is due to smaller releases, which isolates change. This isolation streamlines the solution development process through each phase, from quality assurance to deployment.

This makes it easier for clients to implement the change and gives them more confidence in the process. The increased confidence acts as a positive feedback loop, further reinforcing the process. On the contrary, the waterfall approach is characterized by infrequent releases that rely on bundling hundreds of changes into a single release. This is inherently riskier and means more complex implementations for clients, resulting in a higher likelihood of an incident occurring.

Continual Innovation

At its core, the DevOps philosophy creates an environment where positive feedback grows trust in the process. That level of trust in turn leads to the continual delivery model as the norm. Continual delivery enables companies to focus on innovation, which then feeds the cycle of successful digital transformations. Again, this positively reinforces the process and acts as a force multiplier enabling those who embrace the DevOps way to maintain their competitive edge in the marketplace.

Today’s technology companies and financial institutions are more focused on digital strategies as consumers handle more and more business via mobile devices, and they need partners who can help them keep their consumers engaged. For software companies committed to remaining innovative and ahead of the curve, implementing DevOps can help them meet clients’ demands for quick deployments.