A CircleCI survey of 2,013 business leaders in the U.S. and UK published today finds nearly all respondents (97%) recognize that the success of their business within the next year depends on their software development teams. Despite those findings, well over one-third of respondents (39%) admit their organization is challenged when it comes to innovation and acquiring and maintaining developer skills.
A full 89% of respondents said they also have a good understanding of how to measure the performance of their engineering teams. However, 40% of companies are still using antiquated metrics such as the number of lines of code written, while another 37% measure story points.
More troubling still, less than one-third of respondents (30%) said they plan to make adoption of DevOps best practices a priority. On the plus side, only 15% of respondents said they are implementing a continuous integration/continuous delivery (CI/CD) platform for the first time.
The CircleCI survey suggests that improvements in how software is delivered could be worth, on average, up to $126 million per year. Nearly two-thirds of respondents (65%) said their business is involved in digital business transformation initiatives of one kind or another. Another 20% said they have completed one.
Jim Rose, CircleCI CEO, said it appears that while more organizations now realize how dependent they are on software, many of them have yet to address issues that fundamentally impact developer productivity. For example, more than half (52%) of respondents don’t allow their software developers to choose their own tools, noted Rose. While there is a clear need for a consistent approach to building and deploying applications, Rose noted that DevOps best practices should not require developers to employ a specific set of tools. Developers are only able to truly innovate when they are able to experiment with different tools, said Rose.
In general, Rose said DevOps adoption tends to go through various cycles. Many organizations today are looking to reduce the number of tools that make up a toolchain. However, those efforts shouldn’t curtail the ability of developers to innovate. A CI/CD platform that provides the foundation for DevOps workflows needs to be easily extensible, noted Rose.
It’s not clear to what degree adoption of DevOps best practices have stagnated, but the number of organizations that have implemented DevOps across their entire enterprise remains limited. Most organizations have individual teams that might have adopted DevOps to one degree or another. In many cases, those teams are using disparate tools and platforms.
Most organizations clearly want to be able to build and deploy applications faster. The challenge isn’t so much mastering DevOps platforms as overcoming many of the cultural issues that conspire to limit DevOps adoption. In time, however, the need to rely more on digital processes will force the DevOps issue. As one organization makes advances—thanks in part to their ability to effectively employ DevOps processes—the more keen rival organizations will be to make sure they don’t lose ground. It may be a while before business executives connect the dots between their ability to compete and the degree to which organizations have mastered DevOps, but it’s increasingly apparent that day is not too far off.