KMS Technology Survey: DevOps Enjoying its Moment in the Sun




Atlanta, Georgia (October 19, 2017) KMS Technology has completed a survey of more than 200 IT professionals who participated in DevOps implementations in the past year. The survey, which was conducted in September, sought to clarify the goals set and challenges experienced by IT professionals during these deployments. A key takeaway was that in order for DevOps to be successful, companies needed a well thought out plan including a clear understanding of available financial and human resources, and potential constraints.


In general, it appears that IT professionals were extremely satisfied with their decision to adopt a DevOps model. Among IT pros surveyed by KMS, 43% reported having a “very positive” impression of DevOps prior to their transitions. When these transitions were completed, 51% had a very positive impression, and 79% had achieved their desired goals.


In terms of goals, IT professionals set the following: more efficient time-to-production for new software; better collaboration between IT and other lines of business; and more consistent and higher quality software deployments. Interestingly, the two least important goals were improved IT culture and better communication within the IT department.


IT pros surveyed by KMS also ran into a series of challenges during their transitions, the most significant being the limited skill set and knowledge of DevOps among in-house IT staff (28%). The second biggest challenge was a lack of support among executive staff (23%), followed by an inability to agree on and/or articulate the goals of the transition (18%) and a lack of budget to initiate, implement and complete the process (17%).


And yet, 94% of IT pros said their organizations were able to overcome these challenges.


Meanwhile, 85% of DevOps transitions took a year or less to complete. Most (44%) cost between $100,000 and $500,000, and nearly one-third said that the majority of the budget was spent on tools and technologies. 40% said their budget for DevOps-related expenses (software development, testing and services) would rise as much as 25% next year.


The vast majority (78%) sought guidance or support related to their DevOps transitions from external service providers. When asked which services an external provider could offer that would be helpful to a DevOps transition, the most common answer was help with strategy, planning and budget (51%), followed by guidance and training on tool selection and use (50%). 44% said “feet on the ground” to compensate for inexperienced staff.


The consensus among IT pros seems to be that DevOps has clear advantages despite some challenges. And what advice would IT pros have for colleagues considering a similar move? Responses included to clearly articulate and document goals and plans (48%), secure management support (45%), prepare for substantial training and product adoption support (44%), and partner with an external service provider in areas where you lack in-house expertise (43%).


“DevOps offers an opportunity for IT organizations to improve communication and collaboration with lines of business, and the ability to automate various software development processes,” says Josh Lieberman, President of KMS Technology. “But a smooth transition depends on the support of senior management, the experience of in-house staff, working with the right external partner as needed, thoughtful tool selection and sufficient training. DevOps deployments also should not be rushed or underfunded. The survey results are consistent with feedback we’ve received from clients who have undergone similar transitions.”


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