I wrote an article in March 2019 for CIOs to convince management about DevOps investments financially and culturally. Fast forward, March 2020, the world is facing the COVID-19 crisis forcing teams to work remotely, this makes CI-CD investment more important than ever.
The tables have turned for CIOs and businesses have some buy-in for creating digital future using DevOps as an enabler. The digital world is changing fast and with new societal norms of social distancing, stay-at-home orders, and restricted traveling, new consumption patterns are arriving fast. With this, I CIOs must put more efforts in outlining business benefits about DevOps funding because–
One virus has removed the luxury from business leaders to decide their future digital plans. Businesses can no longer wait for the right time to push their digital applications in the market.
Still preparing DevOps case, here are few tips
The crisis has convinced a lot of executive to think ahead of time and include new-age technologies in their business functions. With some buy-in from your management, I will believe including these sections in your business case, apart from regular business background and executive briefing -
1. DevOps – An Answer to current business problems
CEOs seek answers on how technology investments will keep the existing customer base, how sales will increase by X% for online channels, how our competitor increased market share in XYZ geography as compared to last year. In present crisis, digital applications delivered using CI-CD practices are giving answer for CEOs’ questions like:
- With no store visits, how are we planning to retain the customer base and engage them? – Digital mediums can provide them the comfort of staying at home and continue shopping. We can introduce additional features of stay-at-home loyalty rewards and programs in our application.
- How sales will increase [continue] by X% for online channels? – Continuous Delivery practices will make sure applications have no or lowest downtime.
- How our competitor increased market share in XYZ geography? – They are already ahead of us in releasing features enabling business continuity as usual.
2. DevOps Metrics
DevOps provides measurable benefits, and these are directly linked to product quality, number of customers, customer satisfaction score, downtime and uptime, Mean time to Repair and Resolve and many other metrics. Some of them are–
- Deployment frequency - To understand how often we deploy to production or to another significant point in our CD pipeline, such as a staging environment.
- Deployment time – It is important to know how long it takes to deploy to production. This will help you to understand the importance of automated deployments to reduce the time to deploy change sets to production.
- Lead time – It is a measure of the efficiency of the development process, of the complexity of the code and the development systems.
- Customer tickets – An important indicator of application problems is customer support tickets and feedback. The last thing you want is for your users to find bugs or have problems with your software. Because of this, they make a good indicator of application quality and performance problems.
- Availability – This is used to analyze an application’s overall performance and determine its operational statistics in relation to its ability to perform as required.
3. Convert DevOps into Money
DevOps business case with metrics can translate every sprint planning, new feature deployment, test cases added and downtime into bottom-line, cost savings, optimizing operations, efficient cash flows and tech debt reduction translated to operating flows. Some of the ways to do it are -
- Translate the recent downtime you experienced in dollars and how we are losing customers. Show how DevOps reduces friction between Dev and Ops team.
- Present numbers to management on how your teams are spending times on fixing non-relevant issues of fixing and finding things. Talk about DevOps continuous loop that finds relevant issues early in the development and provide insights to fix them.
- Prevents time wasted in finding irrelevant issues and fixing them because of lack of prioritization.
- Highlight how DevOps stresses on automation and this can save a lot of time by automating manual tasks.
- Educate them about the rising costs each year with the maintenance and inflexible systems architecture.
- Present success stories of how DevOps helped in advancing the application development life cycle. If you can present competitor case studies, chances are high for business leaders to relate to them.
- Highlight the competitive risk of losing market share to competitors who are already using DevOps.
Read how we helped one of our clients to fast-track their journey towards CI-CD with measurable outcomes.
4. Post-Covid Business Scenario
There will be one simple rule for businesses operating in Post-Covid era–Invest in technologies that help reduce the spread of the coronavirus while helping businesses stay open profitable. Software and digital applications power any such technology that helps businesses achieve continuity and profitability. Telehealth, Contactless delivery, Remote Workforce, Virtualization, Asset-less Banking, eCommerce is a few.
Software power these business models and achieving them using waterfall is a moonshot project. CI-CD practices are the way to go ahead. One pitfall company might encounter in starting new CI-CD initiative is that the concentrated focus on it might lead to CI-CD being viewed as a goal rather than practices and tools. Present it as an enabler to support the broader strategy of the company. Include business specific Post-Covid scenario where digital ecosystem is supporting business achieving customer satisfaction.
Qentelli’s value stream assessments analyse organizations across various lines of business to discover gap between the As-is State of the DevOps practices and future goals. We chart out the plan to bridge the existing gap between (As-is State and Future Goals) using technology as an enabler. We include an exhaustive plan with overview of business costs, risks, and business-benefits of DevOps. This information is valuable for building a business case for DevOps and communication with the benefits to executives and other stakeholders.
This pandemic has removed all the excuses for businesses to postpone CI-CD investments. The sections highlighted above will help CIOs to present the business case backed by relevant numbers, case studies and vision of the DevOps exercise. A winning business case for DevOps is crucial to the overall success of DevOps initiatives. Start the conversation with us at firstname.lastname@example.org to help in building your DevOps business case.