DevOps Maturity Model – From Traditional IT to Complete DevOps
DevOps has transformed the IT industry by changing the way teams operate and collaborate in the process chain and workflow.
By now, most organizations will have achieved some level of DevOps implementation in their software journey.
While there are a few in the process of understanding DevOps impact, a few are yet to realize the complete DevOps potential.
But the most common misconception around DevOps adoption continues to remain i.e., ‘understanding it as a journey or a destination’.
This is what the ‘DevOps Maturity Model’ precisely speaks about!
Understanding DevOps Maturity
By definition, DevOps Maturity is described as a model that determines an organization’s standing in DevOps journey along with determining what more to be accomplished to achieve the desired results.
Understanding DevOps adoption ‘as a continuous journey, not a destination’ stands crucial to achieving DevOps maturity.
The DevOps maturity model determines growth through continuous learning from both teams and organizational perspectives. More the capabilities and skills, more will be the ability to handle issues of scale and complexities.
As the experts recommend, organizational DevOps maturity can be gauged by their abilities in the following four areas:
1) Culture and Strategy
DevOps has to be understood as a culture-driven approach that brings together different teams, driving them towards a common objective. Transition to DevOps means a transformation in the organization’s operating culture backed by a set of policies and process frameworks. So, that needs proper planning and perfect strategy.
Automation is key to continuous delivery and continuous deployment mechanisms in DevOps process. By automating repetitive tasks, the automation process eases development, testing and production in a DevOps cycle, thus saving time and enhancing resource efficiency.
3) Structure and Process
Modern-day IT functioning is process-oriented and involves processes across all stages of the Software Development Life Cycle (SDLC). This has advanced in a DevOps environment, where every stage is a set of processes in line with corporate policies and business objectives.
4) Collaboration and Sharing
This is the most important aspect of DevOps culture. Collaboration and sharing are key to DevOps and teams (on the same location or a different location) will need to align tools and resources towards achieving common goals and objectives.
According to Forbes research, organizations, most commonly, find themselves in one of the following stages as part of their DevOps journey:
- Unconscious incompetence: Organizations fail to understand DevOps and its advantages
- Conscious incompetence: Organizations still see siloed processes even after 12-18 months of DevOps journey with some automation
- Conscious competence: After four years of DevOps journey and successful automation, organizations focus on collaboration across teams and streamline sharing mechanism
- Unconscious competence: Here, organizations are all set with structured frameworks, in-depth collaboration, the concrete process for effective sharing
What Makes a DevOps Maturity Model?
A perfect DevOps maturity model determines DevOps maturity in three ways:
- Assessment of the current state of capabilities
- Identifying areas of improvement
- Outlining steps to achieve desired DevOps goals
In line with these three steps, the DevOps maturity block verifies maturity in build, deploy and test stages across application, data and infrastructure levels:
1) DevOps Maturity for Application – Determines DevOps maturity by the ease in code movement from Development to Production phase. Achieving this requires having builds, tests, code coverage, security scans and monitoring as automated components part of deployment pipeline.
2) DevOps Maturity by Data – Determines DevOps maturity by ability to clear path to automate changes to data and validate functionality on a regular basis, through DataOps.
3) DevOps Maturity by Infrastructure – Determines DevOps maturity by ability to ease infrastructure using capabilities around automation, streamlining and enabling self-service to provision environments, among other tasks.
Summarized, DevOps Maturity model involves five transformation stages:
1) Stage-1: Initial
Traditional environment with Dev and Ops separated is handled.
2) Stage-2: Managed
Beginning of change mindset focused on agility in Dev and initial automation in Ops, with emphasis on collaboration.
3) Stage-3: Defined
Organization-wide transformation begins with defined processes and established automation.
4) Stage-4: Measured
Better understanding of process and automation, followed by continuous improvement.
5) Stage-5: Optimized
Achievements are visible, team gaps disappear, and employees gain recognition.
While these 5 stages make a complete DevOps maturity model, it’s imperative for enterprises to keep checking their maturity at every stage, and eventually identify focus areas and ways to evolve in the overall journey.
What to Measure in a DevOps Maturity Model?
There are a set of parameters to be measured at every stage of DevOps Maturity Model to confirm an organization’s level of DevOps maturity. These measures ideally define the direction the organization is advancing in its DevOps journey. They are:
- Number of completed projects and the release frequency should ideally high resulting in ROI
- Percentage of successful deployments should maintain an edge over unsuccessful ones
- Mean Time To Recovery (MTTR) from an unexpected incident/failure from the time of occurrence, should be nil or as low as possible
- Lead time, from development of code to deployment in production should be satisfactory
- Deployment frequency to determine the frequency of new code deployments
The stage-wise process and the above parameters define an organization’s DevOps maturity success.
DevOps Maturity Linked to Security
DevOps maturity is directly linked to DevOps security. As organizations progress in DevOps journey, competitive edge becomes a serious demand calling for faster release cycles and digital innovation demands a strong pitch.
This is where the challenge of security starts becoming more serious and which is why DevOps maturity calls for reconsidering of security practices.
Eventually, organizations will have to make security an integral part of their DevOps process and take it closer to all stages of application development.
At the maturity level, DevOps experts work with security personnel for early security integration across all parts of the Software Development Lifecycle.
This can happen through effective DevSecOps implementation. solutions like Containerization can also help to some extent in addressing issues on a continuous basis by limiting the vulnerable resources.
Moreover, Security and DevOps teams can also collaborate in applying security policies and frameworks to all the DevOps tools and resources.
Business Benefits of DevOps Maturity
Giving a complete picture of an organization’s DevOps standing, the DevOps maturity model presents a wide range of business benefits:
- Faster adaptability to change
- Ability to tap opportunities
- Identifying areas of fulfillment
- Improved scalability
- Operational efficiency
- Increased delivery speeds
- Enhanced quality
More such benefits are part of the DevOps Maturity model that gives you the ability to witness the full DevOps potential.
DevOps Maturity increases your overall organizational workflow, enhances release frequency and minimizes time-to-market, thus giving you a competitive edge!
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