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DevOps Drives Revenue, Study Finds

Think DevOps is still just a buzzword? The recently published results of a survey of 1,300 senior IT decision makers might change your mind.

Commissioned by CA Technologies and published in the white paper, "TechInsights Report: What Smart Businesses Know about DevOps," the survey suggests that IT execs are taking the DevOps movement quite seriously, investing resources in developing DevOps strategies and seeing "concrete business benefits" from their efforts.

Market researchers at Vanson Bourne concluded that the survey shows tha,t "IT leaders recognize they must change how their organizations work to accelerate time to market, improve software quality, speed application development and meet growing customer demand. It also confirms that two-thirds of IT leaders are deploying new technologies, updating processes and collaborating across IT domains to implement DevOps and achieve these goals."

Thirty-nine percent of respondents reported DevOps strategies already adopted in their organizations, and 27 percent said they plan to adopt such a strategy. Only 18 percent said they had no plans to adopt DevOps.

But they also found that one in six IT decision-makers are actually unfamiliar with the term "DevOps," even though they may be implementing key elements of it. And there appears to be wide disagreement among respondents on how a DevOps strategy should be implemented.

The term "DevOps" found its way into the popular tech lexicon in 2009 and has evolved into an enterprise discipline that addresses the disconnect between what is traditionally considered software development activity and what is traditionally considered technology operations activity. It aims to smooth out the interaction among Dev, Ops, and QA within an enterprise to improve efficiencies and increase productivity.

The survey results strongly suggest that, as the paper's authors declare, "DevOps is real" -- specifically, that it is yielding improved business in the form of increased revenue, faster time-to-market, improved competitive positioning, and enhanced customer experience. Between 17 percent and 23 percent of respondents reported these improvements.

The "spectrum of tools and technologies" respondents reported using in their DevOps implementations included: IT automation (52 percent), agile development (47 percent), collaborative teaming between development and operations (45 percent), and parallel development technologies such as service virtualization (42 percent).

The core driver of current DevOps adoption in the enterprise, the researchers believe, is the need to satisfy customer demands. Respondents reported a range of concerns underlying that driver, including: greater collaboration among IT teams (47 percent); a greater need for simultaneous deployment across different platforms (41 percent); the increasing use of mobile devices, such as smartphones and tablets (35 percent); an increasingly complex IT infrastructure that is part physical, part virtualized, and part cloud (28 percent); and the need to reduce IT costs (16 percent)

"DevOps is evolving from the theoretical into an essential strategic approach for all businesses," said Shridhar Mittal, general manager of CA Technologies' Application Delivery group, in a statement. The report "paints a clear picture" of what companies can expect to gain by embracing the new strategy and transforming their IT organization."

The market researchers surveyed 1300 IT executives in financial services, healthcare, manufacturing, public sector and telecommunications in 21 countries. The respondents held the titles of IT executive, management, project lead, or enterprise architect in companies with revenues of $100 million or more. The survey was conducted between May and July 2013.

Posted by John K. Waters on September 19, 2013