State of DevOps: Everyone's slinging code out faster

Quality beats quantity, though – and having a decent boss is a game-changer

By Andrew Silver


Deployment is up in the world of DevOps.

The "lowest" performing IT organizations are deploying software between once a week and once a month — up from every month or six months in 2016, according to the latest State of DevOps report.

The data was clustered into three distinct performance categories based on how frequently a team could deploy code and how resilient their systems were to changes and failure.

The survey-slinger also mentioned that "teams with the least transformative leaders were half as likely to be high performers." It defined "transformative" leaders as those that "inspire and motivate followers to achieve higher performance" and bother with such things as "vision", communication, supportive leadership, and "personal recognition" of staffers' work.

The report – created by automation vendor Puppet and sponsored by vendors with a clear DevOps stake – surveyed a group of 3,200 IT professionals, developers and executives (compared to 4,600 in 2016).

But wait. It does suggest that the gap between the lowest-performing organizations and highest performing organizations decreased: the highest deploy only 46 times more often than the lowest, compared to 200 in 2016. They also deploy code less frequently than the bottom rung: the lead time is 440 times faster in 2017 compared to 2,555 times in 2016.

On the flipside, the highest performing teams in 2017 have a much faster mean time to recover than the lowest performers (96 times now compared to 24 times before) and slightly lower change failure rate (1/5 as likely now compared to 1/3 as likely before). Puppet speculates that this is because low-performing teams have increased speed but they haven’t put the hard hours at the keyboard investing in quality — so you get more failures and need more time to fix things when they break.

“High performers understand that they don’t have to trade speed for stability or vice versa, because by building quality in, they get both,” the researchers write.

Thanks for the reminder, Puppet. ®

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