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Best of TechBeacon 2019: DevOps lessons to learn from

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Jaikumar Vijayan, Freelance writer

In 2019, DevOps moved further into the mainstream both in terms of adoption and maturity. The proportion of high-performing and elite organizations continued to climb steadily while the number of companies with less mature practices continued to decrease.

Even so, many companies struggled to get the most out of their DevOps initiatives because of process inefficiencies, infrastructure deficiencies, and a variety of other issues. TechBeacon's list of the 12 best DevOps stories for 2019 examines many of the issues that are top of mind for DevOps practitioners and for organizations that are considering implementing it, or that are trying to figure out ways to improve upon existing processes.

[ Learn the secrets of successful DevOps initiatives in TechBeacon’s guide. Plus: Download the EMA analyst report on Optimizing DevOps Initiatives: The View from Both Sides of the DevOps Divide ]

DevOps transformation

DevOps at scale: How to build your software factory

One reason many organizations have trouble scaling up their DevOps operations is that their systems are not designed for it. To succeed at enterprise DevOps, organizations need an integrated set of tools, services, data, and processes. You need to build a sofware factory, says Yaniv Sayers, senior director and chief technologist at Micro Focus. Here he explains how Micro Focus used a software factory approach to plan, build, test, and release software.

5 red flags: When DevOps might not be a good fit

There are many benefits to implementing a DevOps approach to software development. However, there are some situations where full, end-to-end DevOps is not only unnecessary but is also not the right fit. Freelance writer Ericka Chickowski speaks with analysts, CTOs, and other experts to come up with five warning signs that DevOps might not to be the right move for an organization.

5 DevOps infrastructure challenges—and how to overcome them

High-performing organizations that have implemented DevOps practices well tend to be able to deploy code much faster than low-performing organizations. Elite performers, in fact, deploy code as much as 2,500 times faster—and have one-seventh the failures of organizations at the other end of the spectrum.

A study by Atlassian found that companies wanting to improve their DevOps capabilities are often hindered by legacy technologies and other infrastructure deficiencies. Freelance writer Robert Lemos identifies five DevOps infrastructure challenges that organizations often encounter and explains how to overcome them.

Why DevOps is not enough

DevOps processes can accelerate software delivery times and help organizations quickly create new applications, services, and products. If implemented correctly, DevOps processes can help organizations enable many of their digital transformation goals, but not all of them. In this report, Richard Knaster—​SAFe fellow and principal consultant at Scaled Agile—​explains why organizations need a combination of lean, agile, and leadership in addition to DevOps to successfully navigate the challenges of digital disruption.

DevOps trends

Why and how to implement pipeline as code with Jenkins

Over the last few years, scripted pipelines have substantially transformed the manner in which Jenkins is used. Pipeline as code has helped developers describe their continuous integration/continuous process programmatically. Pipelines have helped take some of the complexity out of building new software and have given developers a way to address some of the limitations of Jenkins' UI. Glenn Buckholz, technical manager at Coveros, addresses the reasons why developers should implement pipeline as code with Jenkins and how to go about doing it.

What's wrong with your value stream mapping

Process inefficiencies have undermined the benefits of DevOps at many organizations that have implemented it over the years. Though some 80% of firms have adopted DevOps principles, a high proportion has not succeeded in eliminating defect-prone software to the extent they had originally anticipated.

The effort to address the issue resulted in the creation of value stream mapping (VSM) —a lean management approach for analyzing and optimizing current processes. Unfortunately, nearly a decade after adopting VSM, many companies have fallen short of their goals. Lance Knight, senior vice president and general manager at ConnectALL, explains what organizations are getting wrong with VSM.

2019 Accelerate State of DevOps: How elites drive high performance

Organizations across most industry sectors have gotten better at DevOps. The proportion of elite performers in particular has tripled over the last 12 months and now accounts for 20% of all organizations that have implemented DevOps.

That is one of the key takeaways from the 2019 Accelerate State of DevOps Report from Google Cloud and the DevOps Research and Assessment (DORA) group. Nicole Forsgren, co-founder, CEO, and chief scientist at DORA, sifts through the report and highlights seven other key points.

DevOps trends to watch: Teams, value streams, and 'NewOps'

Businesses without a properly thought-out strategy for DevOps will hit a trough of disillusionment in the near future, according to Gartner analyst Gene Spafford. He expects that organizations will fail because of limitations in their DevOps management approaches and their business leadership. Here Spafford lists five other trends that organizations need to keep an eye on, if they are doing anything with DevOps at all.

[ Get up to speed on quality-driven development with TechBeacon's new guide. Plus: Download the World Quality Report 2019-20 for lessons from leading organizations. ]

Secure DevOps

Epic DevSecOps fails: 6 ways to fail the right way

There are multiple ways in which a DevSecOps project can go off the rails. Mistakes that are made during the coding and testing phases can often lead to epic failures. While such failures can be costly, they allow organizations to learn and improve from their mistakes. Freelance writer John P. Mello, Jr., examines six approaches that organizations can use to fail the right way and offers recommendations from experts on how to learn from them.

Scale your security with DevSecOps: 4 valuable mindsets and principles

Concerns over DevOps security have driven many companies to integrate security controls and processes into the software development cycle. These DevSecOps processes are transforming software development at many organizations and are resulting in more secure software being produced. Clint Gibler, research director at NCC Group, offers four approaches that organizations can take to scale software security with DevSecOps.

How Google and Facebook do code analysis

As two of the largest online businesses, Google and Facebook produce more code than almost any other organization. Unsurprisingly, the two companies have developed and perfected a new approach to incorporating static code analysis into their software development workflows. Stephen Magill CEO at MuseDev, talks about some of the measures the two companies are using to build code analysis into existing feedback mechanisms for developers.

3 ways AI will advance DevSecOps

Businesses are increasingly applying machine-learning and AI methods to address information security issues. About one in two enterprises have already deployed or plan to soon deploy ML and AI in cybersecurity applications. The goal is to use the technologies to learn about security mistakes based on experience, and then to use that knowledge to improve the company's overall security posture. Joseph Feiman, chief strategy officer at WhiteHat Security, discusses three ways that AI and ML will move DevSecOps processes even further than they are today.

[ Learn how to apply DevOps principles to succeed with your SAP modernization in TechBeacon's new guide. Plus: Get the SAP HANA migration white paper. ]