DevOps Teams need DevOps Platforms (VSDPs)

Aug 6, 2021

The Rise of DevOps platforms – aka Value Stream Delivery Platforms. 

Your competitors are moving forward with their ‘ digital transformation plans, so must you. Without breaking your business – remember your ERP program!

But:

  • How do you deliver cloud digital services with the quality expected by your organization?
  • How do you incorporate customer and internal feedback as soon as it should?
  • How do you acquire the agility a fast-changing business requires to stay relevant?

Well. It’s complicated – but you can cut through the complexity. This is the story of how DevOps platforms do the complicated part. How they bridge the gap between your developers and their cloud operations colleagues and further between business and IT.

Value Stream Delivery Platforms (VSDP), as reported on by Gartner, are the solution.

Gartner coined the name and defines Value Stream Delivery Platforms (VSDP) as progressive SaaS/PaaS DevOps platforms. In other words, Value – Delivered. CodeNOW is such a platform.

What follows is the story of how VSDP DevOps platforms help you do more — with the same.

DevOps is How it is Done Now

There is no question that businesses move to the cloud to improve the efficiency of their operations. The cloud’s pay-as-you-go model helps companies reduce risks, time, and costs. You pay only for what you need when you need it. Also, with the cloud’s as-a-service model, you do not need to commit to large, upfront capital investments. Cloud providers are doing that for you.

That is, cloud providers do the CAPEX, you do the OPEX. Providers continually improve their infrastructure, tools, and services. You get the improvement at little incremental cost, and at no investment cost. You focus on your business, not on infrastructure. It works. It worked. 10 years ago. The cloud today is much more than a cost-saving abstraction over infrastructure.

We have seen two interlocked cloud evolution trends in the last decade. On the one hand, the cloud provides a higher level of abstractions (platforms as a service, software as a service, security as a service). On the other hand, companies are integrating a larger part of their business processes in the cloud.

The drivers of cloud evolution have not changed, however. It has always been about creating value and delivering value. So what we see are new ways and improved ways to create and deliver value with cloud technologies as an enabler.

This is where DevOps and cloud-native architectures come into play. These are the new best practices that separate high-performing cloud users from the pack.

The DevOps practice creates value through collaboration between development, operations, and other stakeholders. DevOps provides a unifying, coordinated, end-to-end vision of value creation and delivery. DevOps achieves that by continually monitoring and adjusting the organization, processes, systems, and technology of a business — so the value is delivered faster. It is not an experiment. It is something you should already be doing if you are not.

Cloud-native architectures are the other partner in the winning combo. Cloud-native architectures provide capabilities that are uniquely delivered by cloud technologies. Agility, scalability, resilience, productivity, efficiency, and more.

Those capabilities provide business outcomes. Agility enables faster value delivery, earlier customer feedback, and improved innovation cycles. Automatic scalability and resilience result in constant service availability and quality — at any level of demand. Cost efficiency increases return on assets and free resources to innovate.

That is why DevOps and cloud-native are best friends. They build on top of each other. It is how you put better software faster in the hands of users.

Good. So the question now is how do you ‘DevOps’? How do you cloud-native all the things?

Your DevOps need a DevOps platform

The good news is there has been plenty of experimentation in recent years. Best practices have emerged. This is what we now know: you don’t want a separated DevOps team, you need a DevOps platform to bridge the gap. And unless you are Amazon or Facebook, you should not be developing and maintaining a DevOps platform yourself.

This is not us saying this. The Puppet’s State of DevOps Report 2021 explained the crucial role of DevOps platforms in those terms (emphasis is ours):

The most highly evolved organizations in our DevOps models are adopting a platform model that enables self-service for developers and curates the developer experience.

A highly effective platform provides a guided experience for the customers of the platform and that platform is treated as a product. It enables stream-aligned team members to focus on the things most important for their customers and get common building blocks and tools from the platform. Its purpose is to ensure delivery is smoother and faster.

We could not agree more. We spend all our resources doing just that kind of platform. So you don’t have to.

In technical terms, we are a DevOps value stream delivery platform (VSDP). That is how Gartner sees us.

Let Platform makers make Platforms

This is a key point. So we repeat it. Let computer manufacturers make computers. Let cloud providers provide highly available, resilient, low-latency edge computing.

Let platform makers make platforms. 

It’s as we said in the beginning. Let others do the CAPEX, you do the OPEX. This is not just the reduced business risk (a lot of things can go wrong in software development…). It is benefiting immediately, at little incremental cost, from the state-of-the-art best practices that drive cost efficiency and value delivery — we are continually adding them to our platform. It is you continuing to allocate your resources where they are best used.

In fact, this is why CodeNOW exists today as an independent company. CodeNOW was conceived in Komerční Banka and powers its digital banking efforts. Komerční Banka continues to focus on banking, its core business — rather than operating and maintaining an internal platform. David Svejda, the Head of New Digital Bank at Komerční Banka, recognized the value of CodeNOW in the following terms:

The standard development platform helped KB to start cloud-native development based on robust unified grounds at scale… It is our platform of choice for long-term, business-driven, technology-enabled transformation.

Smaller companies stand to benefit even more from CodeNOW’s substantial investment in its platform. Small companies know that finding (and keeping) the highly specialized, highly coveted staff to create and maintain an internal DevOps platform is expensive. Attracting that person with Argo CD, Kubernetes, Terraform, and Azure skills — and that is a great communicator — may be entirely out of reach. That person may anyways object if for any reason in the future some of your needs are better served with AWS, Chef, or GitHub actions. Those are yet other skills to learn.

Building a DevOps platform will also consume valuable executive management time. And you may fail to keep your in-house platform updated with new best practices and technology releases…

CodeNOW incorporates DevOps best practices

The CodeNOW value stream delivery platform integrates out of the box the full spectrum of capabilities required to continuously deliver software features and services to customers with the security, high availability, and quality required in today’s demanding environment. The CodeNOW platform’s capabilities span the whole delivery cycle: software architecture and design, version control, continuous integration, continuous testing, security, release orchestration, continuous deployment, and monitoring. Microservices: checked. Containers: checked. Service mesh: checked. CodeNOW abstracts over the numerous underlying sources of complexity linked to technology, vendors, and architectural patterns.

CodeNOW not only implements DevOps best practices at no incremental cost to its customers. It also eliminates key pain points that other platform providers fail to address. Two core differentiating features stand out. First, CodeNOW does not lock you in with a specific vendor or set of vendors. Second, CodeNOW provides you with standardized, pre-made, templatized components to jump-start your value delivery.

No Vendor Lock-In

Vendor lock-in is a trap. Vendors make it so it is easy to fall into it. Vendor lock-in increases risks, decrease negotiation leverage, and reduces efficiency by removing options to improve operations. Vendor lock-in creates dependencies that are hard to break, negatively affecting the agility with which an organization reacts to its business environment. Spare-parts supplier Inter Cars singled multi-vendor development — which CodeNOW’s multi-vendor stacks make possible — as their primary factor for selecting a VSDP. In the words of Martin Duda, Product Owner at Inter Cars:

CodeNOW allowed us to keep multi-vendor development under control, which was one of the main parameters [considered when] we decided [on] CodeNow.

CodeNOW relies on open-source technological stacks so CodeNOW does not lock you in either!

Premade Services Marketplace

With CodeNOW’s VSDP, companies with little know-how or scarce resources create scalable applications from ready-made cloud-native components, which they operate and assemble without expert knowledge. The logistics company Packeta jump-started its digital transformation thanks to CodeNOW’s predefined technological stacks. Adam Horzenberger, Group CTO at Packeta, explained how CodeNOW sped up their development and operations:

We’re facing a scaling challenge. The business grows with incredible speed and our IT systems must keep pace. We’ve started the transformation to a microservice and product-based organization. With CodeNOW, we were able to launch this mission instantly. It’s a solid cloud-native backbone.

Where do you want to go?

Long story short, companies large and small use CodeNOW to focus on what they do best. That is creating products, developing features, incorporating customer feedback.

Where are you in your digital transformation? What challenges do you face? Chances are, the CodeNOW platform already has automated, pre-made, free of lock-in solutions to your issues. 

Value. Delivered. NOW.

The CodeNOW VSDP DevOPs platform with no vendor lock-in