In a European study “Automation, DevOps, and the Demands of a Multicloud World: EMEA” an IDC InfoBrief, Sep 2018, sponsored by Red Hat and Intel, it appears that 2018 marks an important phase in DevOps where EMEA businesses are moving beyond DevOps hype to becoming DevOps-native.

And for a majority of organizations, multicloud, open infrastructure and automated management are hallmarks for DevOps success. They have a laser sharp focus on infrastructure modernization, open source technologies, cloud and high value, unified automation. Those that don't follow risk being left far behind in the digital era.

Continue reading to learn more about the IDC study in this guest post from Jen Thomson, Research Director, IDC European Services and Archana Venkatramen, Research Manager, IDC European Datacenter Research.

The digital economy is all about speed of business, continuous innovation, and rich user experience. If you're not innovating relentlessly, and at speed, you'll get trampled by someone who is. IDC research reveals a widening performance gap between organizations that have the infrastructure, automation, and processes in place to accelerate their time to market and those that haven't.

Delivering services and apps at the speed of the consumer is a business imperative for success. As speed becomes the name of the game, lengthy, cumbersome, and restrictive software development cycles are no longer acceptable. Embracing business-centric collaboration (DevOps) is mandatory as business innovation is now the top benefit of DevOps adoption, ahead of enhanced developer productivity.

It's no longer a question of whether to adopt DevOps — it is now about getting DevOps right and scaling it across the enterprise.

More than 60% of EMEA organizations surveyed are embracing DevOps, and some are more advanced than others.

There is a growing gap in the performance between organizations in the earlier stages of the DevOps journey (where less than 25% of the application estate is developed and deployed using DevOps) and those that are more advanced. Advanced DevOps users are able to deliver software faster — their annual app code release has increased by 50%, they have significantly faster customer feedback loops, and have to cut average customer lead times by 95% compared with those still in the initial phase of the DevOps journey. Clear business benefits are pushing advanced users to expand DevOps to over half (52%) of their application estate by 2020.

But advanced users aren't without their own hurdles. Although they have made progress in cultural alignment and adapted newer methodologies for DevOps success, they still need to address cultural changes consistently. They often cite technology challenges related to legacy, scale, and unpredictable cloud costs as more serious obstacles for DevOps. As enterprises enter the next stage of the DevOps journey, they need to prioritize:

  • Infrastructure modernization
  • Automation of infrastructure and management
  • Overcoming ongoing cultural resistance to make DevOps enterprise wide

The good news is that overcoming infrastructure challenges is easier than overcoming cultural challenges. Accelerating software delivery performance requires an agile and open infrastructure. It's no surprise that three-quarters of EMEA organizations surveyed cite infrastructure scalability and agility as "mission critical" or "very important" to succeed in DevOps and cloud-native strategies.

Existing Infrastructure Limits DevOps Progress

Only a third of EMEA organizations surveyed have confidence in their current infrastructure and management resources to effectively meet the business requirements of the next three to five years. This is a cause for concern. An agile and open infrastructure is the technology foundation for DevOps and it cannot be an afterthought.

For three-quarters of EMEA organizations cloud, openness, and modern infrastructure underpin DevOps success. In the next three years, as organizations prepare to support the ever-changing application landscape, infrastructure modernization and cloud evolution will have the greatest impact on IT investment decisions.

No journey is easy and there are speed bumps along the way. IDC finds that cloud reliability, stability, security, and unpredictable costs hold back a faster transition to cloud-native applications and DevOps in EMEA, but advanced users are finding a way around. For instance, IaaS concerns are driving a shift to multicloud to hedge cost or stability related risks. By 2020, two-thirdsof EMEA organizations are likely to rely on multicloud.

Automation a Key Pillar to DevOps Success

The last piece of the "speed" puzzle is automation. Eight out of ten advanced DevOps users surveyed feel the pain from a lack of automation, and admit they will need to deploy new management and automation solutions by 2020. Enhanced security, increased speed of application deployments, and reduced downtime are the top priorities for next-generation management and automation strategies. Just think about the cost and business implications of a single application failure (we estimate this at €157,000) or security breach if enhancements are not made.

Advanced DevOps users are more mature in expectations from their automation tools, and understand the impact automation has on business productivity, better mitigation of risk, scaling DevOps methodologies, and having staff focus on high-value tasks.

In short, reduced business risks, improved customer experiences, and improved innovation are the top three benefits EMEA organizations expect from infrastructure modernization, management, and automation.

As advanced DevOps users turn their focus to security, cost efficiency, and measurable KPIs, late adopters need to act fast to close the gap. They also need to learn from advanced users on forthcoming infrastructural and automation challenges and address these in parallel.

2018 marks an important phase in DevOps in which EMEA businesses are moving beyond DevOps hype to becoming DevOps-native and have the technologies and management in place to improve business speed and agility.

Go here to view the results and findings in each region.

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