Despite the fact that DevOps didn’t start to gain traction until just a decade ago, the DevOps philosophy has become crucial for startups today. After all, the startup culture is alive and thriving; more and more entrepreneurs are taking the discovery leap and creating solutions of their own. For many, DevOps—a development method that cross communications between development and operations teams—is much more than a methodology or philosophy; it’s a culture movement.
Startups require a very specific set of needs. Competition is fierce, and investor dollars go to the most promising companies. And the premise of the DevOps concept is to shorten the development lifecycle, gain valuable feedback across internal teams, create enforced code, and push applications to the frontline as quickly and efficiently as possible—all of this without compromising quality.
Automation is a major part of the process; without it, you’d lose time and open your startup to vulnerabilities caused by manual error.With the right workload automation tools, you’re well on your way towards success. Here’s how automation prevents this, and why you should make it a priority:
Reduction of Human Error Mistakes
Simply put, automated deployment tools help reduce the risk of human error. For instance, feature creep (or scope creep) is a major issue in tech development. This is when developers are inundated with features and a lengthy “wish list”, sometimes in ambitious desires to build a product, and other times driven by a clients growing list of demands. As you can imagine, when the plates are full, mistakes are easier to make as team members become less careful in order to meet strenuous deadlines.
To safely prevent feature creep from affecting code, many developers use a combination of project management and automation tools. With automation and source code management, software developers are able to collaborate with all the associated confusion. CI tools, on the other hand, allowing multiple developers to merge various changes into the source code repositories, automating every aspecting of the development lifecycle—including testing.
Continuous Delivery: The Startup Satisfaction Guarantee
Today’s startups need to be continuously delivering updates to appease their user base. No matter what your team is developing, chances are it requires ongoing work. Let’s say you’ve built a comprehensive CRM for the real estate industry. As time goes on, not only do you discover new features necessary for the best user experience, but your industry also shifts with time—and your code has to respond.
Using Automation Tools
The proliferation of automation tools has made the DevOps approach even more scalable than ever. Without these automation tools, a sound infrastructure would be very difficult to maintain. An optimized pipeline, starting with planning and spanning all the way to production, is more attainable than it was a decade ago.
Cloud-based applications like Docker, Git, and Kubernetes have made this a much more attainable goal. Git has become synonymous with the software industry, namely for its ability to track the progress of development work. Many users employ Git as a safe experimentation platform, creating different branches and merging features when they’re ready for deployment.
Then you have Docker, the number one container platform on the market and a must-have DeVops tool. Docker automates app deployment and aids distributed development. It also helps make your containers even more secure by isolating them into separate containers. Package all the dependencies in the container, and send it off as a unit, where you can run it on any other platform stress-free.
Kubernetes is another container platform that can also integrate with Docker and its alternatives. With this solution—which is still relatively new—you can manage containers at scale, grouping them into logical units. Each Kubernetes cluster is comprised of one master and multiple work nodes, and if a work node goes down, the platform redistributes those containers where it sees fit.
Security plays a major role in the longevity of your business and reputation, and the integrity of your code. Today, every application and feature you deploy should have extensive security requirements. A security breach will not only cost you your business, but your money as well. And in the startup world, you simply cannot afford to rectify a security mishap.
Building trust and reliability in any industry—particularly in the startup world—is already difficult enough. Yet, when it comes to agile development and continuous delivery, taking a huge swing at all your security requirements at once would result in major delays. Instead, taking a layered approach allows you to make gradual, but continuous improvements. As you build, you enforce additional security layers from development to deployment. Security test automation allows you to do this; with this method, you can deliver immediate feedback to your stakeholders and quickly remediate any flags.