ChatOps, DevOps, ScrumOps and 5 Other Ops religions

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According to a survey conducted by Gartner in 2016, some 95 percent of companies were concerned with increasing efficiency and productivity in their IT operations. Of the companies that participated, 43 percent viewed increased efficiency as one of the highest priorities, while 42 percent prioritized increasing productivity.

As a result, there is an increasing number of concepts, methods, trends, and approaches designed to help all aspects of the IT industry achieve higher efficiency and productivity. With these being problem areas for many companies, the recent endeavor to boost efficiency and productivity comes with a whole new range of solutions. In particular, there is a number of “Ops,” all of which have the goal of improving IT operations.

An in-depth analysis of each of these will help shed light on how and why they originated and what benefits they offer. Read further to understand the many different Ops out there and help decide which may sound the most appealing to you.

DevOps

DevOps is one of the more familiar of the Ops, involving the process of improving collaboration and communication between development, product management, and operations.

Top Drivers for DevOps adoption:

  • 55% need to increase quality
  • 48% is to reduce overall costs
  • 35% goes towards improving customer experience
  • 33 to reduce complexity
  • 26 is for greater collaboration

At its heart, DevOps is an attempt to help operations and development to overcome the disconnect that often exists between them and help them work together toward common goals. Whereas developers are often focused on change, operations rely on things remaining the same. As a result, without proper communication and collaboration, development and operations will often be at odds with the best way to move forward with projects vital to the success of a business.

DevOps is an evolution of the Agile and Lean approaches, but it is this emphasis on development and operations working closely together that sets DevOps apart.

DevOps teams increased from 16% in 2014 to 27% in 2017.

ScrumOps

First introduced in 1986, Scrum is a framework built on the premise that, due to customers changing their minds about what they like, projects will often change course and present unforeseen challenges. It is founded upon the principle that projects may take unpredictable turns. In response, rather than trying to perfectly plan and predict every eventuality, developers instead focus on having a framework in place to quickly respond to changing requirements in the case that a major change occurs.

ScrumOps builds on this by combining Scrum with the DevOps principles previously outlined. For many developers, the thought of mixing the two methodologies may not seem natural, but the two concepts actually compliment each other very well. Dave West, CEO of Scrum.org, said in an interview that:

“It’s a total misconception that it has to be either Scrum or DevOps. And there’s a tension between the two that is wholly misplaced…we’re using it as a way to remind everyone in the DevOps and Scrum communities that it’s not an either/or situation. The fact that you can use Scrum for more effective DevOps truly should be something that everyone gets.” And thus, the two can go hand-in-hand.

ServiceOps

ServiceOps is a relatively new discipline that has emerged in response to the growing complexity of managed services. As companies increasingly rely on data centers, hosted services, and third-party service providers, it can be a challenge to successfully integrate and effectively manage the various services involved. ServiceOps is designed to help companies achieve speed and agility despite these challenges.

Like DevOps, ServiceOps includes input from operations from the very beginning of the design phase. As services are designed, automation and self-service are heavily emphasized, while manual intervention almost always costs additional time and money.

As an added goal, the emphasis is placed on service that follows the rule: “good is good enough.” In other words, companies can often spend valuable time and resources trying to improve service beyond the point where it adds or returns any value. Instead, ServiceOps is focused on achieving the maximum value with the least amount of involvement.

InfraOps

InfraOps, meaning infrastructure operations or infrastructure optimizations, “is the layer consisting of the management of the physical and virtual environment, which may very well be within a cloud environment.”

One of the primary goals of InfraOps is to help eliminate as many components as possible in an effort to streamline operations and eliminate breakpoints. In less extreme cases, this may point towards software-defined technologies or converged hardware.

CloudOps

In 2017, Amazon suffered a major embarrassment when a simple technician’s typo caused simple storage service (S3) servers to go offline, costing S&P 500 companies an estimated $150 million.

Unfortunately, Amazon’s experience is by no means a unique situation. According to a survey by the Ponemon Institute, 91% of respondents had experienced a data center outage in the past 2 years. Even more startling, the average financial cost of a data center outage is rising and up to approximately $740,500

With the growth of cloud computing on top of the corresponding need to maintain maximum uptime, CloudOps is taking on an increasingly important role in modern IT. Especially as companies diversify their cloud holdings to increase redundancy, CloudOps will continue to play a vital role in helping organizations manage such holdings and keep all processes running smoothly.

ChatOps

One of the more interesting Ops gaining traction today is ChatOps. As the name implies, ChatOps revolves heavily around chat and instant messaging (IM) platforms. In many ways, ChatOps is a natural evolution of many of the different methodologies and concepts that have influenced the various Ops.

In particular, ChatOps builds upon the improved communication that is a fundamental facet of the Ops movement. As developers and other team members increasingly rely on chat and IM communication apps, integrating tools and bots into that existing workflow helps create a collaborative work environment.

For example, advanced tools and bots can capture any number of commands from team chat rooms. These commands can range from simple notifications to advanced code deployments. Because this is all happening within a chat room, the entire process is collaborative and allows all team members to have input in real-time rather than experiencing delayed responses or lag time.

According to a Slack user survey, teams using its ChatOps tool increased productivity by 32 %, reduced internal email by 48.6 %, reduced meetings by 25.1 %. Team transparency increased by 80.4 %.

Teams using the ChatOps tool have increased productivity by an average of 32%.

AppOps

AppOps is an effort to maintain continuity and responsibility throughout the development process. In its most basic form, AppOps involves the developer who writes the software and reinforces him or her as the one who helps deploy and maintain it.

In many ways, AppOps is simply a new term for an old concept. In the past, when development teams were smaller and entire projects were designed and implemented by only a handful of people instead of an entire time, developers were almost always responsible for the entire life-cycle of the application they had developed. While programmers have moved away from that method as projects have become ever more complex, organizations are once again seeing the many benefits of the developer being hands-on for the entire life-cycle of the software.

EnterpriseOps

EnterpriseOps continues to be an important part of the IT industry today. While many pundits believed that DevOps could ultimately lead to IT operations becoming obsolete over time, the truth of the matter is that these operations are more important than ever before.

As the IT field becomes more and more complicated, EnterpriseOps is gaining recognition as a vital part of the process. This is especially the case as companies and organizations move to full automation, where EnterpriseOps plays an absolutely necessary role in designing, implementing and maintaining automated systems.

Conclusion

Without a doubt, the various Ops are taking the IT world by storm. In some cases, such as AppsOps, they are simply new terms for old concepts adjusting to the modern terrain of IT. Other strategies, such as EnterpriseOps, represent a resurgence of traditional IT cornerstones as their value continues to be evident. And yet others still, such as ServiceOps and ChatOps, represent all innovative methods of accomplishing tasks and projects made possible by the advances of modern technology.

The spinning wheel of technology pushes companies to seek forward-thinking ways of making efficient IT output. Some old-school methods have proven their usability, but what if we pair tried and tested methodologies with IT Operations? Besides well-known combinations like DevOps, ChatOps and ScrumOps, there appeared a bunch of more you might even haven’t imagined. Will some of these alliances bring software development to the new level or will they just leave their mark on the IT map as once-existed buzzword?

DevOps automation spans the entire pipeline, from code development and testing to infrastructure configuration and deployment.

Many DevOps initiatives have reduced delivery cycle time, but security practices and policies are becoming the bottleneck to rapid production delivery, much in the way that overblown release management practices were four or five years ago.

Written by Vladyslav Gram, Head of DevOps, Ciklum

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