Preconditioning Trust for Software Factories – Reliability, Governance & DevOps

DevOps Basics

By: Garima Bajpai

A lot has been written about trust-building through DevOps; I like to explore reliability for next-generation software factories treating “reliability” from a holistic organizational perspective and looking at factors that can play a critical role in enhancing reliability quotient for software-driven deliveries through DevOps. Reliability quotient, in turn, is a pre-condition for trust internally & externally and can help to instill trust in software factories to a larger extent.

Reliability is often considered as something “which is dependable”, that behaves predictably every time. According to the widely available definition, reliability engineering attempts to measure the safety of the structure, stipulate the minimum required safe margin, and propose methods and tools to implement the optimum safety level of a component or systems. Also, the resilience attempts to provide a mechanism to avoid an undesired failure.

Having looked at the conventional reliability definition, reliability is not only a maintenance problem, in the digitally integrated age, but it will also have more economic rewards and liabilities associated with how created software solutions maintain consistency internally between the separate components and externally how much inherent replicability it can offer.

It has been seen that consensus has been building up from leading consulting firms, researchers, start-ups, enterprises that software-driven companies can reap benefits from enhanced adoption of DevOps practices which can translate into faster deliveries, however, it is not difficult to comprehend that more need to be done in times where DevOps principles & practices are still evolving, to tackle the need of reliability into the flow, feedback and experimentation to address the challenge of regulation of data usage, enhanced focus on security policies and increased adoption of AI-driven capabilities.

To scale up the existing DevOps practices for next-generation digital ecosystems, setting up advisory boards comprised of industry practitioners, policymakers and user communities is becoming an urgent need. Also, there is an outlook towards building a global vocabulary through bringing the education ecosystem which is cohesive with priorities, lastly build-up minimal viable governance with policymakers, standardization and certification bodies.

The bigger question is how we will set the rules for addressing software reliability concerns in a digitally integrated ecosystem-based on DevOps principles and practices. There is no one answer and there can be various ways to do this, similar to what is done for Industry 4.0 initiatives:

  1. Industry-led governance
  2. Building up a consortium and engage with stakeholder to define reliability and governance
  3. Policies & standardization driven by government bodies

 

Methods
Structure
Opportunities & Challenges
Industry led
governance
Creating vendor neutral assessment & audit body to provide guidelines for software factories for develop, delivery and operation leveraging DevOps practices Software Reliability is not achieved by a single DevOps practice, process or toolkit. It requires industry led large scale consensus to drive outcome
Consortium Use agile governance model, provide capabilities like virtual labs & incubators for developing solutions and onboarding DevOps practices Building up a social ecosystem of practitioners which can provide guidance and support to the DevOps community of practitioner at global scale
Government driven policies & standardisation More or less a top down approach It can be an option for highly regulated verticals where compliance is mandatory

 

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