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Top 6 DevOps Trends of 2020

by Nikki Gannon, on Jan 14, 2020 10:45:00 AM

This new decade brings customer and business expectations for unprecedented speed with unfailing accuracy, reliability, and security for all code. Knowing the top trends of the coming year can help you stay ahead of the competition and improve how your teams work to achieve goals. To help you make the most of Q1 2020, we’ve researched the top DevOps trends to set your 2020 off to a great start.

1. Automation is the Major Focus

Automation removes manual processes and the human errors that arise from them while increasing the cadence of their deployments. This is why automation is one of the key principles of DevOps. Every DevOps pipeline that includes Continuous Integration, Continuous Delivery, and Continuous Testing is working towards that key principal.

However, most organizations don’t make full use of the automation available to them. To get the full advantages of DevOps in 2020, focus on what new automation can be implemented, and what existing automation can be improved.

automated deployment pipeline

Start by evaluating your current DevOps automation practices. Every organization has their own set of requirements and practices, so there is no one-size-fits-all solution to implement or increase automation. So, the best place to start is looking at what your company already has:

  • If you already have automation in place, are you using your tools to their fullest extent, or have you only partly implemented them? If you do not have anything in place for automation, tools like Inedo’s BuildMaster help you to automate your process.
  • Are there any areas of your deployment lifecycle that experience significant human failures or delays? If so, can those areas be automated without affecting compliance and visibility?
  • Are other teams using automation in ways that you aren’t, and is that automation knowledge transferable to your team’s needs?

It’s possible, even likely, that asking the above questions and others like them will guide decisions for how to spend your automation time and budget.

2. Moving from Monoliths to Microservices

Monoliths are simple to develop, test, and deploy, but this approach doesn’t scale. Microservices break apart huge, unwieldy applications into smaller components. This allows each application to have its own microservice, simplifying release and especially roll-backs.

Monoliths are far too complex, and they don’t scale. They continue to grow in size and complexity over time, making bugs increasingly difficult to fix. Making changes within a monolith causes further problems that can, in turn, cause vulnerabilities within applications and slow down the release time.

Shifting to microservices will remain a popular trend in 2020. As organizations scale, they will need to reduce the complexity of their applications. If you are currently using monoliths and are considering moving to microservices, here are some things to consider:

  • Communication is critical, especially with microservices. If silos form or if you want to use microservices with manual deployments, you will risk overwhelming your team.
  • Microservices will result in lower lead times. This will get features out to the market faster as soon as they are production-ready, but it will significantly alter the timelines on which teams are used to working.

By shifting to microservices, organizations can keep up with customer demand without the disruptions that you would encounter with altering a monolithic application.  A good CI/CD tool simplifies the transition to microservices through automation.

3. The Rise in Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning

Artificial intelligence (AI) is a type of machine learning that teams use to do tasks that humans would otherwise do, but which are far too complex or too large for humans to perform. Companies like Facebook, Amazon, Apple, Netflix, and Google use AI to handle large datasets such as product recommendations, television and music recommendations, and other information that customers/users can find helpful and specifically tailored to their interests and needs.

DevOps generates a lot of data. Humans struggle with accurate data entry and analysis of this data, especially when datasets are huge, which often causes bottlenecks or fragile points as you create software. Identifying these areas of human error and replacing them with AI will reduce repetitive administrative tasks, remove bottlenecks, and reduce testing time by running only the most appropriate tasks at only the appropriate moments. In 2020, AI is going to be a great option for larger organizations to use as they continue to scale.

Some things to think about before implementing AI include:

  • Are you able to handle your data entry and analysis process with the people and tools you currently have in place?
  • How large are your datasets?
  • Is your organization encountering bottlenecks which hinders performance?
  • How is your data being entered and used?

By answering the questions above, you can see whether your organization would benefit from adopting AI. Take a look at where you are at now to see if you are ready for a change. While smaller organizations are probably able to handle their data with existing human teams, larger enterprises will naturally produce more data, making AI a beneficial option.

4. Serverless Architecture Migration

Serverless architecture is a practice in which a cloud provider is used to manage the allocation and provisioning of servers. Server maintenance is tedious work that is a significant draw on developer time and company resources. By contrast, the cloud provider performs back-end services, which helps businesses to reduce the administrative costs associated with server upkeep. Organizations are increasingly migrating away from on-premise server farms to the cloud and will be a major trend of 2020.

Before moving to a serverless architecture, you should ask yourself these questions:

  • Are your normal applications smaller or one-off tasks? Or are you usually working with large-scale applications with significant business impact? Smaller, one-off applications may not be worth the effort of transitioning to serverless architecture, while large-scale often is. How much of your budget (money, time, workers) is going toward managing and provisioning servers?
  • If you are currently managing your own servers, do you encounter errors with server management and configurations? How frequently?
  • Implementing a serverless architecture requires an analysis of your current server management practices. If you find that your current server upkeep is too costly and that your developing large-scale applications, then it may be worthwhile to go serverless. Carefully evaluate cloud providers and your current management processes to determine if this is the direction for you.

5. Implementing Security in Every Step

Security in DevOps, or DevSecOps, is the practice of implementing security into every step of the software development process and treating security as everyone’s responsibility. This prioritizes security by establishing workflows for open communication.

Human error introduces vulnerabilities into the development lifecycle. These vulnerabilities can permit attacks, data breaches, and other issues that can have a significant negative impact on both businesses and consumers.

DevSecOps adoption can mitigate the frequency of those errors and their impact, which is why this will certainly be a trend in 2020. By implementing security throughout the delivery process, teams can save time by not having to repeat deployment steps, vulnerabilities are detected earlier, the time-to-market is reduced, and the chance of issues reaching end-users decreases.

hacker with magnifying glass

Some things to consider before implementing DevSecOps include:

  • This requires a cultural shift in an organization. If your organization is averse to change, you need to carefully determine the appropriate action plan to get everyone on board
  • Make sure you have tools capable of DevSecOps. Chances are the tools you are currently using have the ability to implement security checks throughout each step of the process. If they do, research how best to implement these checks. If they don’t, consider tools like Inedo BuildMaster that allow highly customizable security checks throughout your CI/CD pipelines.

Defining security and access control policies ensure that vulnerabilities don’t reach end-users. This requires a careful analysis of your software development process along with the tools you currently have. By implementing security throughout the entire process, teams can save time by detecting vulnerabilities early in the process, which prevents them from reaching end users.

6. The Evolution of Kubernetes

Kubernetes is a container management tool developed by Google. This tool can manage load-testing websites, create staging environments, and move business applications into production.

Companies that have a large number of containers often struggle with deploying, managing, connecting, and updating them. Teams who do not have a tool to manage their containers can quickly become overwhelmed trying to orchestrate them and may fail to meet business demands. Some teams may even be managing their containers manually, which waste an entire team’s resources to container management. If you’re using containers and might want to implement Kubernetes, consider:

  • Does your application use a microservice architecture?
    • First determine if you are using or are transitioning to a microservice architecture
      • If you are already using something like Docker to containerize your applications, Kubernetes may be a great choice.
      • If you’re not using containers, learning Kubernetes would be a waste of time and resources
    • Is your containerized development and deployment process slow?
    • Is orchestrating containers far more difficult for your teams than creating and using containers?

Kubernetes has gained massive popularity since the mid-2010s and will continue its vogue into the 2020s. Teams should assess current container management methods to determine if Kubernetes would benefit them.

Don’t Just Jump on the Bandwagon!

Remember: Just because it’s trendy doesn’t mean it’s right for you. This list of the top six DevOps trends of 2020 just represents what’s on people’s minds and gives some food-for-thought on how to decide whether they’re right for your organization. It’s up to you to know your company’s needs and determine what’s right for you.

We can help. Inedo DevOps tools maximize developer time, minimize release risk, and empower stakeholders to bring their vision to life faster. All with the people and technology you have right now, and always staying on the cutting edge of DevOps technologies.









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