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5 Best Practices to Implement Cloud-Native DevOps

As the world transitions to cloud-native offerings as an industry norm, DevOps is gaining traction for its critical role supporting more efficient IT infrastructure. DevOps is designed to boost collaboration and communication by streamlining the automation process to expedite the creation and deployment of applications. Implementing cloud-native DevOps requires organizations make a massive cultural shift. Without this change, businesses are unlikely to be as competitive or fully utilize the innovations cloud has to offer.

There’s always risk adopting new technology. Following are five best practices to accelerate your company’s implementation process and address potential challenges head-on.

1. Think cloud, adopt the cloud.

Optimize technology with a variety of tools tailored for the cloud. Understanding how technology works in the open-source environment that cloud-native DevOps relies on, is essential to successfully managing the components as it is to selecting the right tool for you. Don’t get locked into using one tool. Instead, select the right tool for each task while remaining as cloud agnostic as possible.

2. Implement a dynamic security strategy.

Not considering the security aspect is one of the most common pitfalls when using emerging technology. It’s imperative security is built into cloud-native development workflows and thought process, and it needs to be diligently monitored. If funds are available, appoint a chief security officer who’s responsible for scrutinizing DevOps security in the cloud and creating playbooks for each monitored triggered. Cybersecurity is becoming more complex due to the unpredictable nature of the sheer volume of technologies involved in each solution. Cloud security starts at the first thought of it. And a bug bounty program can bring the hackers to your side of the court.

3. Commit to ongoing training.

Perform a self-audit and or penetration tests to reveal weaknesses in company procedures and individual employees. Invest in training to effectively address any gaps in cloud skills, considering how new the technology is and how rapidly it’s evolving. Providing development opportunities will also improve engagement and retention, which is a challenge for many employers. Make sure your employees take part in giving on-going feedback to the training maintenance and evolution.

While it may be tempting only to emphasize new-hire training, the rapidly changing technology requires efforts be geared toward ongoing learning for the entire team. This investment will pay dividends, with DevOps and the cloud netting major long-term savings. To cut time, training can be conducted remotely. Train employees close to their job function,  but push boundaries so non-IT employees have a basic cloud understanding.

4. Once, twice, automate!

Automation is critical to minimize the delivery cycle and eliminate dependence on manual labor. Provisioning networks, infrastructure, application deployment, and setup can be automated and versioned with IaC tools (such as terraform). There’s also endless automation opportunities for containers, cloud computing, security, testing, monitoring, and so many more. For instance, containers allow developers to compartmentalize applications to work on components without having to worry about the potential impact they may have in other areas – making it easier to construct consistent, tangle free deployments. However, keep in mind it may be challenging to manage multiple versions, requiring infrastructure and testing investment.

5. Test for performance, and performance your tests.

Automated testing will reduce wasting developer’s time on manual testing and reduce human errors on testing. It’ll also allow developers to take advantage of doubling up on testing. Making sure every change is stable and benchmarked. Test during the development stage and set the ground for an effective CI process, especially if you roll out patches on a regular basis. Automated testing is easier in a cloud-based system and isn’t dependent on having sufficient hardware to make it run properly, allowing cloud hosts to scale up or down with ease.

Final Takeaways

Cloud-native DevOps is revolutionizing the way applications are being built and managed. And it starts with the way we perceive our challenges. DevOps was tagged as a culture for a good reason, it starts with the way we think things out. Embracing the DevOps culture enables organizations to leverage cloud solutions to create reliable services that are easily scalable. While it may look resource-intensive, cloud-native DevOps is becoming less of an optional benefit and more of a business necessity.