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Contributed Articles

The Dark Side of DevOps

This article was originally published on Venture Beat

You’re already crafting your digital transformation strategy. Your organization is staffed with top-notch developers ready to implement the innovative, business-differentiating technologies you need to attract, engage, and retain customers.  And you’ve invested in scaling Agile, driving DevOps adoption, automating the Continuous Delivery pipeline, and all the other components involved in moving from ideation to delivery as rapidly as possible. So what could possibly go wrong?

Testing. 

Software testing typically doesn’t garner much attention from IT leaders — until they get a glimpse at how slow, expensive, and archaic their software testing processes really are. In the vast majority of Global 2000 organizations, software testing is still dominated by yesterday’s tools and outdated processes — which simply don’t meet the needs of today’s accelerated and highly-dynamic development processes.

What does this disconnect mean for you?

Impeded innovation

DevOps is ultimately designed to accelerate the process of delivering business-differentiating software to the end user. However, dismal test automation rates (around 25 percent for DevOps adopters, under 18 percent overall) will undeniably prevent you from maximizing the potential speed gains.

Organizations transform Dev and Ops, but then testing cannot keep pace…and they get stuck. It’s a sad but simple fact: if you have a slow testing process standing between highly-accelerated development and operations processes, there’s just no way that you can achieve the desired delivery speed.

Risk to your brand

Now that software is the primary interface to the business, a software failure is a business failure. Yet, with today’s compressed and continuous delivery cycles, it’s simply impossible to test everything before every release — even if testing is highly automated.

To protect your brand while accelerating software delivery, testing must be realigned to focus on your top business risks. Traditional testing takes a “bottom-up” approach to validate whether new functionality works as expected. Modern delivery processes require testing to automatically assess the overall impact to the core user experience and instantly determine if the release candidate has an acceptable level of business risk…