DevOps Definition: Focus, Means, and Expected Results

DevOps Definition: Focus, Means, and Expected Results

DevOps is about enabling people to collaborate across roles to deliver value to end users quickly, safely, and reliably. It's a combination of focus, means, and expected results. The focus of DevOps is people. The means of implementing DevOps is process and tooling. But how you implement DevOps makes the difference—from your DevOps pipeline and DevOps tools, to your DevOps model and methodology.

By now, most people in technology are familiar with the term DevOps. What we call “DevOps” will often differ between organizations, yet one thing remains the same: DevOps is defined by people building software and how they work together, not simply by what’s in their toolchain.

As part of GitHub’s Professional Services team, I’ve had the opportunity to see the way many companies have adopted DevOps and what it looks like for teams in their day-to-day work. Here’s what we’ve learned—and some common DevOps misconceptions we’ve encountered along the way.

What is DevOps?

DevOps has been defined in many ways: a set of practices that automate and integrate processes so teams can build, test, and release software faster and more reliably; a combination of culture and tools that enable organizations to ship software at a higher velocity; a culture, a movement, or a philosophy. None of these are wrong, and they are all important aspects of DevOps—but they don’t quite fully capture what’s at the heart of DevOps: the essential human element between Dev and Ops teams, when collaboration bridges the gap that allows teams to ship better software, faster.

For organizations, DevOps provides value by increasing software quality and stability, and shortening lead times to production. For developers, DevOps focuses on both automation and culture—it’s about how the work is done. But most importantly, DevOps is about enabling people to collaborate across roles to deliver value to end users quickly, safely, and reliably. Altogether, it’s a combination of focus, means, and expected results.

  • The focus of DevOps is people.
  • The means of implementing DevOps is process and tooling.
  • The result of DevOps is a better product, delivered faster and more reliably.

devops programming

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