People, Processes, and Technology: From the Perspective of Development and Operations Engineering
Written by: Destiny Young, an IT Infrastructure/Cybersecurity Engineer
The other day, I called out 9Mobile for its extremely poor data connectivity services. I had been frustrated after I subscribed to a huge data in the expectation that it will serve me the intended purpose.
In response to my concern, 9Mobile explained that its ongoing infrastructure and system upgrade is the reason for the poor Quality of Service (QoS) on its network.
The above has been a major challenge for most companies in the technology services industry in Nigeria.
In today’s rapidly changing digital landscape, organizations need to focus on integrating people, processes, and technology to drive sustainable change. Digital transformation is not just about implementing innovative technologies; it requires a strategic approach that includes rethinking organizational structures, processes, and the skills of employees. By aligning people, processes, and technology, organizations can effectively navigate digital disruption, enhance customer experiences, increase operational efficiency, and drive sustainable change. Successful digital transformation requires a shared vision, strong leadership, and a commitment to continuous learning and adaptation.
What is fundamentally a deficit in #9Mobile’s Business process is a gap in its Software Development (Dev) and Technical Operations (Ops) Team. This brings me to the concept of DevOps Engineering.
What is DevOps Engineering?
DevOps engineering is a software development approach that emphasizes collaboration, communication, and integration between software development (Dev) and IT operations (Ops) teams. The goal of DevOps is to create a culture and set of practices that enable organizations to deliver applications and services more rapidly, reliably, and with greater efficiency.
Traditionally, software development and IT operations were separate entities, often resulting in silos of expertise and slow-release cycles. DevOps seeks to break down these silos by fostering a culture of shared responsibility, automation, and continuous improvement. Here are some key principles and practices of DevOps engineering:
- Collaboration: DevOps encourages close collaboration between development, operations, and other stakeholders throughout the entire software development lifecycle. This collaboration helps prevent misunderstandings, improves communication, and aligns everyone’s efforts toward a common goal.
- Automation: Automation is a fundamental aspect of DevOps. Manual processes are error-prone and time-consuming. By automating tasks such as code deployment, infrastructure provisioning, testing, and monitoring, teams can achieve consistent results and reduce the likelihood of human errors.
- Continuous Integration (CI): CI involves frequently integrating code changes from developers into a shared repository. Automated testing is performed to catch issues early in the development process. This practice ensures that new code changes don’t disrupt the overall stability of the application.
- Continuous Delivery (CD): CD extends CI by automatically deploying code changes to production-like environments, enabling faster and more reliable releases. The goal is to have software in a deployable state at any given time, making it easier to release updates to users.
- Infrastructure as Code (IaC): IaC is the practice of managing and provisioning infrastructure using code and automation. This includes servers, networking, databases, and other components. IaC allows for consistent, repeatable, and version-controlled infrastructure deployments.
- Monitoring and Feedback: DevOps places a strong emphasis on monitoring applications and infrastructure in real-time. This helps identify performance issues, errors, and other problems early, allowing teams to react quickly and ensure a positive user experience.
- Microservices and Containers: DevOps often involves breaking down applications into smaller, independently deployable services known as microservices. Containers, such as Docker, are used to package these services along with their dependencies, making deployment and scaling more manageable.
- Culture of Continuous Improvement: DevOps is not just about tools and processes; it’s also a cultural shift. Teams continuously assess their processes, seek feedback, and make iterative improvements to achieve better outcomes over time.
By adopting DevOps practices, companies can achieve faster release cycles, improved collaboration, higher software quality, and better alignment between development and operations teams.
However, implementing DevOps effectively requires a commitment to cultural change, process improvement, and the adoption of appropriate tools and technologies.