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5 Rules for Choosing the Best DevOps Tools

DevOps is often described as a culture or a movement. It involves development and operations working together closely to increase both the speed and quality of application delivery.

While the collaborative DevOps mindset is essential, your transition to DevOps will only be a success if you also transform your IT infrastructure.

DevOps software is a rapidly growing market, and it can be hard to know which tools you really need. The best DevOps solutions for your organization will depend on your unique requirements, but there are a few principles that every business should keep in mind while evaluating DevOps tools.

#1. Automate as Much as Possible

Speed and accuracy are both key to DevOps, and both can be greatly increased by the use of automation tools. There’s really no way to introduce rapid, flexible, high-quality DevOps that hinges on manual processes.

Automation also makes it easier to audit, secure, and improve. An enterprise-class automation solution can orchestrate your entire DevOps toolset, providing an easy way to scale your workflows and continuously tweak your processes without adding too much extra work.

#2. Integrate Everything

In a recent webinar with HelpSystems, the analyst firm Enterprise Management Associates (EMA) shared original research on the state of DevOps. EMA’s survey asked respondents how DevOps has impacted their companies’ management tools planning, requirements, and strategy. The top response, chosen by 49 percent of respondents, was that DevOps had created a need for integrations across the management toolset.

Not all integrations are created equal. Tying your toolset together with individual scripts is breakable and difficult to scale. An application-agnostic automation tool can act as a centralized console to manage your entire environment, connecting to any application that provides an API or web service.

#3. Eliminate Siloes

Small organizations may implement DevOps with just a handful of developers and operations specialists. These DevOps teams are usually efficient and agile. But in a large or growing organization, more problems arise. One team divides into many, and they don’t necessarily share tools, resources, and processes. And if your business is just moving to DevOps from a more traditional model, you developers and operations specialist may actually by working against each other, causing you to miss out on key benefits of DevOps like speed and flexibility.

Some of this is solved through culture—communicate regularly, have common objectives, and communicate successes between teams. Tools are perhaps an even larger part of the solution. 46 percent of respondents in EMA’s research felt that since implementing DevOps they are doing more cross-functional tools planning.

When thinking about tools your business needs for development or operations, consider their usefulness across the entire DevOps cycle, not just for a single functional team.

#4. Use the Cloud

DevOps and cloud computing are closely related. While DevOps on premise is possible, cloud increases scalability and agility.

The regular maintenance and upgrades required for on premise infrastructure can slow down your DevOps team and require more IT support. A cloud platform will most likely continually update its technology so that its capable of working with new tools and solutions.

Making use of the cloud also allows for fast self-service provisioning of cloud resources by developers. Development teams can easily innovate and test code, and when resources are no longer needed they can be shut off.

#5. Enable Dev and Ops Teams

Telling development and operations to do their work differently is easy. But if the change isn’t supported with good tools and processes, you’ll run into challenges. There are a lot of things you can do to enable your organization’s DevOps team. A relatively simple example is providing some kind of communication tool to aid collaboration.

EMA looked at how developers will have increased interactions with workload automation tools in the next two years. Many organizations plan to give developers capabilities like designing new workflows or requesting the promotion of jobs to staging and production environments.

For their part, operations should have the tools to make their work scalable. Your DevOps automation solution should offer a library of out-of-the box job steps to use as building blocks for common processes. Robust monitoring tools are also important for keeping your DevOps workflows running smoothly.

Of course, there’s no end to the software solutions that can help your team. The most important thing is to listen to both development and operations and gather information on what will help them be efficient, agile, and error-free.

DevOps and automation go hand in hand. Find out how workload automation enables DevOps with a personalized demonstration of Automate Schedule.