Five Ways to Justify your DevOps Investment

Nothing in life and business is free. In the case of DevOps, you'll have to invest in new practices, technologies and culture change in order to get the benefits.

For some of you working in traditional organizations, this may require you to justify the investment - maybe not in financial terms - but in clear delivery, operational excellence, and other KPIs that are meaningful to the business.

To do this well - and win a leader's support on a DevOps transformation program - you'll need to better understand some of the pain points they are feeling and opportunities they want to hit. That's a step down the road beyond just how IT can do a better job with DevOps. Remember, you'll need an investment.

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The investment probably covers a number of things.

  1. First, you'll likely select some technologies to implement continuous integration and continuous delivery (CI/CD), automate with Infrastructure as Code (IaC), and wrap applications with containers. 
  2. You'll quickly realize that in order to practice CI/CD well, it needs a discipline in continuous testing and so you need test automation software. 
  3. You might also need an upgrade or a new application monitoring tool, upgrades to incident management, and possibly add new reporting capabilities. 
  4. Beyond the technology, you'll need some expertise and/or training to develop CI/CD, automate tests, establish application monitoring etc. 
  5. Lastly, you'll have to consider the time to migrate applications, train development and operation teams, and investment in workshops to drive the organizational culture changes.

Justifying DevOps to Senior Management

I have several ways to justifying the investment and they align with some of the KPIs that DevOps improves. They speak to speed to the following

  • How important is application development to your organization's performance goals
  • How fast you get product and application changes to end users and customers
  • How quickly you resolve production issues
  • How efficient the team is in making changes
  • How optimized is your infrastructure

If you want to learn more about these three ways to justify a DevOps investment, please sign up for the Driving Digital newsletter and I'll share the details.

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About Isaac Sacolick

Isaac Sacolick is President of StarCIO, a technology leadership company that guides organizations on building digital transformation core competencies. He is the author of Digital Trailblazer and the Amazon bestseller Driving Digital and speaks about agile planning, devops, data science, product management, and other digital transformation best practices. Sacolick is a recognized top social CIO, a digital transformation influencer, and has over 900 articles published at InfoWorld,, his blog Social, Agile, and Transformation, and other sites. You can find him sharing new insights @NYIke on Twitter, his Driving Digital Standup YouTube channel, or during the Coffee with Digital Trailblazers.