SaaS has created a wide marketplace in the IT industry. Due to its high demand the race to create quality product has become very competitive. To sustain this fierce competition, mere having a great idea with a solid start won’t promise a good market growth. If an enterprise wants to grow its customer base and see an uptrend in its revenue chart; it has to be prompt in its delivery pattern.
Typically, a Saas entrepreneur sees the success of a business model application based on the following parameters:
- Potential to delivers code in less time and with precision
- Offers complete customer satisfaction
- Ability to work in a robust and scalable application environment
To achieve the following parameters the enterprises must integrate DevOps right from the beginning of the developmental process and continue until the project ends. Even the grassroots SaaS entrepreneurs and cloud providers should consider deploying DevOps for SaaS applications. The benefits enterprises can enjoy by deploying DevOps are the following:
- High scalability
- High resiliency
- Continuous delivery practices
- Increased Agility
- Increased Quality
- Better Innovation
- Reduced Outages
DevOps can effectively support a SaaS startup or similar growing companies to accomplish their strategic goal at a faster pace with better user experience. Thereby giving an edge over its competitors and secure its place in the highly competitive SaaS market.
To make DevOps automation part of the SaaS application strategy, the following points must be kept in mind:
- Assess Design & Process To have continuous integration and delivery process enterprises must assess the design and process of the app and workflow so that they are conducive with DevOps.
- Identify the areas of deployment: All steps of the deployment must be mapped out and any inconsistencies if identified, the process should be standardized at that time itself.
- Systemize Deployment: once the deployment process is mapped out and is consistent with the process, the delivery must be automated to such an extent that anyone can deliver code with just a push of a button.
- Preset Testing: To avoid bugs from impeding the process and making recovery easier, testing too should be automated. To carry out this process all the team members on board should be briefed well about the new testing protocols to leave no gaps untouched for the bugs.
- Alerts: To monitor every step of deployment automated alerts should be in place to alarm the team if something goes wrong, in real-time.
- Increase the speed of issue resolution so that whenever the team gets any alerts they resolve the issue instantly.
To gain an edge at the Saas Enterprise level competitors or even with the other start-ups, enterprises must deploy DevOps automation. Continuous delivery with a zero downtime is always crucial for all IT projects. DevOps bridges the gap between developers and operational engineers and saves on time. Some of the other benefits DevOps has been:
Better configuration management
Configuration management is crucial to DevOps and should not be treated as just another component of the process. It helps DevOps to automate tedious tasks and make the enterprise agile. It gives a holistic support to DevOps and not just one process. When a system-wide change is required across the servers and networks, application, storage then configuration management has a significant role to play. It automates, monitor, design and manages several manual configuration processes. By arranging these processes on AWS platform, enterprises can ensure consistency across integrated systems and increase efficiency. Consequently, business can scale up readily without taking additional IT management staff. Companies can simply deploy a DevOps approach in the absence of proper growth resources.
By frequently updating pod instances with the new ones rolling updates can promote zero downtime. The success of an IT enterprise also depends on its ability to Bug handling. In terms of DevOps, it can be the make-it or break-it factor. In some instances, an immediate fix of a small bug which was looked like a low priority might expose a bigger issue. With multiple levels of test execution, it becomes difficult to remember which bugs were fixed and which were not.
The DevOps process leads to good quality check and lesser defects. It also includes those defects which team decides to ignore and release into production. Through continuous integration DevOps quickly check-in code and build them frequently. DevOps can automate the process from the development and QA to pre-production and production stage.
Zero Downtime Deployment should be there so that the users are not left hanging while the infrastructures are being upgraded.
The success of any software depends on how quickly it is available. Efforts should be made to keep the business undisturbed from the software deployment activity. The regular availability of the software can be made possible through the following ways:
Multiple application servers
With the help of multiple application servers, one can bring down a set of nodes at a time, upgrade, and bring it up to serve the users. Hence an upgraded node is always up and running each time a node is brought down.
The enterprise should design Software architecture in a manner that they support multiple application servers and are load-balanced, this will enable the operations to take down the application server without depending on the site’s availability and without blowing away user sessions. Hence Load Balancer works on the following process:
- It distributes client requests or network loads proficiently across multiple servers
- Warrants the constant availability and reliability by sending requests only to online servers
- Depending on the demand Load Balancer provides flexibility to add or remove servers
Load balance is the minimum requirement for the deployment architecture especially for the enterprises which works on more than one application server node.
Make the best use of DevOps through AWS
DevOps and AWS both entered the IT industry during the same period and have worked together for each other’s growth. Many services of AWS are compliant to the DevOps culture by providing services such as CodeDeploy, CodePipeline, etc. AWS provides first-hand tools for enterprises that deploy DevOps. These tools automate manual tasks, resolves complex environments at scale, test workflows, container management, and configuration management. It is the most secure platform as it gives the enterprises a granular level of control to access its resources.
AWS services such as CodeCommit can be used privately to store and manage assets like documents, source code, and binary files in the cloud. CodeCommit sets the enterprise free from managing its source control system and scaling its infrastructure.
Another useful tool of AWS is CodeBuild which is a well-managed continuous integration service that compiles source code, runs tests, and produces software packages that are ready to deploy. CodeBuild, negates the need to provision, manage, and scale the build servers.
The enterprise must augment their team with a group of Managed DevOps which can harness the skills and experience of multiple Solution Architects and DevOps Engineers at a reasonable cost. Working with managed DevOps service providers to implement a DevOps strategy will always save on cost for the Enterprises.