Piecing Together the Puzzle: Connecting DevOps with ITSM to Manage Dynamic Cloud Infrastructure

Agile IT Operations requires integrating your tools, data, and people via DevOps process orchestration

Image of Laurel Frazier Laurel Frazier · Mar 19th, 2021

The rise of ‘everything as a service’ and cloud adoption has transformed the business landscape. Organizations across industries and of all sizes are reliant on cloud-born solutions to help navigate a wide array of business demands, and are adopting these services at a rapid pace. In fact, according to Gartner “by 2024, more than 45% of IT spending on system infrastructure, infrastructure software, application software and business process outsourcing will shift from traditional solutions to cloud.”

If you work in engineering or IT Operations, this transition adds significant complexity to an already complicated IT environment. As our CTO and Founder Tina Huang notes, “the gap between legacy ITSM and agile DevOps practices makes it difficult and costly for teams to keep up with the constant flux of infrastructure change and deluge of service requests.”

DevOps and ITSM — Friends, Foes, or Something in Between? #

DevOps is focused on shifting the way organizations deploy software — they combine developers and operations into smaller teams to eliminate silos and allow for easy collaboration while building software — resulting in increased speed and adaptability. Larger organizations have struggled with this, given the significant amount of manual processes and complexity their IT organizations are already managing.

Traditionally, many have viewed DevOps practices as the antithesis of ITIL, the set of best practices most widely championed within ITOps teams and by ITSM vendors. Like a game of tug of war, the two sides have often been placed at odds, with an inherent tension at their core. Still, most forward-looking enterprises have begun to recognize that IT operations environments that are as agile as those in development, with an emphasis on both continuous delivery and improvement, are essential in order to thrive in this new cloud-dominant era. Despite this, these same leaders are at a loss for how to do so efficiently and effectively, and without completely turning away from ITIL’s process controls that have served them well thus far.

What's important to recognize is that even in a game of tug of war, the two opponents are also connected to one another. With a focus on shared objectives, DevOps and ITSM operating models can play nice together. Through codifying their processes and incrementally increasing the automation of their most repetitive actions, operations teams can jumpstart their journey to agile service management.

DevOps and ITSM — Better Together #

Operational excellence in this modern era can be optimized by integrating three key pieces — your tools, data, and people.

Tools: Your entire toolchain, whether focused on observability, monitoring, alerting, ticketing, cloud services, infrastructure orchestration, data management, CI/CD, or communications, should not operate in silos. ITSM processes like self-service requests should be measured and maintained through your DevOps tools— enabling smooth business operations and equipping each team to swiftly allocate resources, automate tasks and approvals, and take action.

Data: Metrics help solve mysteries. Whether monitoring for latency or error rate, or tracking human and machine actions and turning it into structured data for a post-mortem, context-rich data is imperative to continuous improvement of process and infrastructure. It is essential that this data can be shared between your tools to allow for robust analysis, insight, and clarity amongst all parties.

People: DevOps is more about cooperation than pure automation — not everything can or should be automated. Strategically keeping humans in the loop is core to operational efficacy. Additionally, fostering cooperation between teams will break down barriers, promote collaboration and knowledge sharing, limit reliance on experts, and enable a prompt response to alerts and incidents. It will also encourage a culture focused on continuous improvement and the sharing of accountability.

Transposit — Your Yellow Brick Road #

Transposit focuses on unifying your tools, data, and people through DevOps process orchestration. Our pre-built integrations with over 200 services equip teams to shape processes to fit their unique needs and diverse stacks with a simple translation layer that breaks down dependencies on experts and enables operations to be executed consistently, regardless of experience or specialized skills in the tooling.

To support organizations in meeting this challenge to unify ITOps and DevOps, we are excited to announce Transposit integrations with ServiceNow, Jira Service Management, and GitHub. These integrations enable teams to take an agile, collaborative, and automated approach to ITSM with runbooks that orchestrate infrastructure change processes using service request automation and Infrastructure as Code (IaC).

“Our goal is to bridge this gap by empowering teams to bring their agile practices into ITSM to enhance collaboration, adapt to change, drive continuous improvement, and, ultimately, deliver value faster”, says CTO Huang.

Is your team using an innovative approach to manage the evolving cloud-computing landscape? Join us on May 12th for a conversation on Rethinking ITSM for Modern Operations.

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