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Busting Myths about DevOps for your Network
With the popularity of NetOps in recent years, business teams continue to leverage DevOps techniques for optimizing IT and scaling operations to meet various business demands. However, it is essential to clarify the following myths associated with DevOps, which if not addressed could be detrimental to your ongoing network transformation activities.
• Automation of manual tasks is the key to speed up deployments:
Although commands executed manually take longer to run, that is not where most of the delays originate from. Therefore the focus should be on orchestration rather than automation. This can be achieved by mapping out the process which would help one identify the biggest time wasters, i.e., handoffs between teams. Handoffs between teams could span anywhere between a few minutes to several days from the submission and closing of the ticket. Only by mapping out a process and shedding light on those wait times would one be able to develop a strategy to minimize the handoffs. Hence, rather than automating manual tasks, teams should focus on eliminating wait times to speed up deployments.
• IT must also be measured by uptime:
DevOps practices focus on metrics such as Mean Time to Resolution (MTTR), lead time to change, et al. Thus by concentrating on our behaviors and operational practices, it encourages one’s attention to proactively implementing technology that augments the ability to detect and fix a problem. Hence the faster you can find and fix a problem, the shorter the downtime.
• Automation of manual process eliminates human error:
The scripts required to support the automation in NetOps are implemented using codes. Hence automation of manual tasks would not eliminate human errors especially when the process is executed by coding. With a wide array of risks associated with coding such as logical errors, security-breaking practice, and algorithmic errors, automation can reduce but would not result in complete annihilation of human errors. One way to reduce and manage defects introduced during development is to adopt DevOps practices that incorporate static script analysis and code reviews.
Although ongoing network transformation is important, it must also be considered as a strategic initiative that requires grave attention to how it is implemented as much as the implementation process itself. Thus separating facts from fiction is exceptionally critical to prevent failures while adopting DevOps practices for NetOps.