Today, enterprises the world over, are increasingly driven through software-based services. They expect the lead time for transition from a business idea to delivery to be considerably short. They expect features and functionalities at the snap of their fingers, with top-notch quality, optimal user experience, and improved software release cycle frequency along with reduced failure rate. There is a mounting need for agility across their whole spectrum of businesses.
For instance, a large Australian energy company automated their software development processes and operations using DevOps practices, which resulted in 90% reduction in deployment time for software products, a 40% reduction in production incidents that could lead to disruptions, and faster resolution of application problems, leading to higher customer loyalty. Another American retailer saw an eight-fold increase in annual product deployments after implementing the Agile framework, DevOps, and related tools and technologies. Products with new features reached the market 40% faster than before. Production problems fell by 20%. IT costs dropped by 20%. And IT infrastructure improvements led to a 95% reduction in lead times for providing required resources.
Enterprises, therefore, are on their agile maturity journey, shifting from a traditional way of software engineering. They are keen to embrace agile methodologies such as Scrum/Kanban, building cross-functional teams, enabling DevOps principles of continuous integration and continuous delivery, and build pipelines besides following cloud-native technologies.
Implementing DevOps begins from a people, process, and tools perspective. The next best natural progression is to bring in more agility through microservices based design methodology via containers. With microservices being small, discrete, and self-contained, this design methodology helps enterprises to reuse components and accelerate development.
Containers work hand in hand in the implementation of microservices based application architecture. Being inherently lightweight, containers allow applications to be truly portable, enabling rapid provisioning of microservices.
According to Gartner, by 2020, more than 50% of the global enterprises will be running container applications in production, up from less than 20% in 2017. As containerized applications in production increase, the need to manage containers at scale will increase. Container technologies are nascent but fast evolving with increased adoption and rapidly expanding use cases. But, concerns such as security monitoring and management are currently challenging enterprises that are moving towards containerization. It is, therefore, important to have a well thought out strategy for container adoption.
Container Platform Strategy
A holistic container platform strategy begins with an initial assessment of the need and includes the following considerations:
Physical server versus virtual machine: Consideration of operational tooling, security and process isolation, cost-effectiveness, and performance.Set featured image
Robust security control: Includes role-based-access-control (RBAC), enabling audit trail, logical portioning, and gaining visibility into vulnerabilities in the software used.
Data mobility: Implementation plan for persistent volumes and replications, backups, etc., based on the storage strategy.
Continuous monitoring: Spans inclusion of basic monitoring processes such as necessary logging, continuous tracking, defining and monitoring metrics, building rule engines for alerts, better visualization of KPIs, and automated action.
Image governance: Setting up strong role-based access control for better image management with versioning
Automated life cycle management: Enabling automated continuous delivery build pipelines along with similar application deployment strategies.
Multitenancy and scaling: Spans orchestration tools, automated scaling up and ramping down based on custom needs, exploring hybrid scenarios, implementing multitenancy, and building resiliency.
Building development productivity components: Implementing self-service such as application catalog.
Cluster management: Centralized, single pane of view and control to manage multiple clusters, high availability, and upgrade.
Chargeback: Implementing a way of charge back to their respective cost centers for container usage.
Considering these factors and given the existence of multiple platforms, and technologies in the industry, it is important to have a strong partner who has deep expertise in cloud native and container technologies. This will allow customers to focus on their business rather than the infrastructure. To find out more about how container orchestration can improve your business agility, connect with us by sending an email to email@example.com.
About the author(s)
Gopalakrishnan Ramamoorthy leads the CBO Agile Computing, Cloud and Edge CoE. His role involves understanding next gen innovative solutions including Container Transformation. He comes with close to couple of decades of experience in Software Product Development, solution architecture, strategy consulting, DevOps, data center transformation solutions. He is a Google Cloud Champion, Google Cloud Certified Architect Professional, AWS Certified Solution Architect, AWS Business & Technical Professional. He has a master's in computer applications and is based out of Chennai.