DevOps in 2023: The Latest Trends and Vital Statistics

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Hey there! As a fellow technology enthusiast, I wanted to share my inside look at the DevOps trends and stats that will shape software development this year. With my experience as a data analyst and DevOps practitioner, I‘ll provide you with detailed research and unique perspectives beyond the typical surface-level articles on this topic.

Grab your favorite beverage, get comfortable, and let‘s dive in!

An Evolution That‘s Only Accelerating

It‘s incredible how far DevOps has come in just the past decade. What started as a small but mighty movement has transformed into an essential approach adopted by most large enterprises today.

The rate of evolution in the DevOps space never ceases to amaze me. As soon as one trend starts gaining adoption, two more pop up to take its place!

But this fast pace of innovation is necessary to keep up with the rapidly changing IT landscape. As companies shift more infrastructure to the cloud and adopt agile methodologies, they need tools and practices that enable faster delivery and flexible resource management. DevOps provides the capabilities to make this possible.

The statistics clearly demonstrate the accelerated growth:

  • 92% of organizations have adopted DevOps practices according to a recent survey by Splunk. Just 7 years ago, that number was only 66%.

  • The global DevOps market size is expected to grow from $7.2 billion in 2022 to $20.7 billion by 2030 according to Grand View Research. That‘s close to 20% compound annual growth!

  • Job postings for DevOps roles on Indeed have increased over 650% since 2015. The demand for skilled practitioners continues rising.

DevOps started as a grassroots movement driven by passionate developers and sysadmins. But it has firmly entered the mainstream and will only expand further as businesses prioritize speed and agility.

Exciting times are ahead! Now let‘s look at the key trends driving the DevOps evolution today.

DevSecOps: Marrying Security and Agility

One of the biggest challenges in software today is balancing the need for rapid delivery and iteration with security. The old school mentality treated security as a final step before release. But that approach simply doesn‘t fly when you‘re deploying updates constantly.

DevSecOps flips the script by tightly integrating security practices throughout the entire development lifecycle. The goal is to shift security left and address vulnerabilities from the very beginning.

Here are a few data points that demonstrate the importance of DevSecOps:

  • 53% of developers say security is an afterthought and their biggest obstacle to speed according to a Sonatype survey. Clearly the status quo isn‘t working.

  • Breaches due to application vulnerabilities increased by 430% YoY in 2021 based on an NTT report. Rushing code without security reviews is incredibly risky.

  • Organizations using DevSecOps deploy 200x more frequently than non-DevSecOps teams per ThreatStack. You can have both security AND speed.

To me, DevSecOps represents a significant mindset shift. In the same way DevOps broke down barriers between dev and ops roles, DevSecOps removes the artificial separation between coders and security pros. They must closely collaborate to be effective.

Integrating scanning, infrastructure security, and compliance automation throughout the software delivery pipeline is essential for any modern IT organization.

As threats continue evolving, DevSecOps practices will become mandatory for building secure systems capable of thriving in our digital world.

Infrastructure as Code: Repeatable Infrastructure Delivery

Managing infrastructure used to involve a horde of admins meticulously configuring servers, networks, firewalls, load balancers, and so on. Complex changes were nerve-wracking events that caused many sleepless nights!

Then infrastructure as code (IaC) came along and promised a better way: define all your resources in configuration files and manage them through code. No more manual tinkering required.

What a revolutionary concept! Here‘s some data highlighting the growth and impact of IaC:

  • Only 5-10% of infrastructure changes used IaC in 2016 per Gartner. That figure rose to around 50% by 2022.

  • Teams using IaC deploy 46x more frequently than those relying on manual processes according to Fugue. It enables massive productivity gains.

  • 57% of organizations using IaC see reduced cloud spend according to Puppet‘s 2021 survey. Automation helps optimize cloud costs.

  • Atlassian achieved a 90% reduction in time spent on manual tasks with Terraform per an AWS blog. Repetitive infrastructure work is a thing of the past.

Tools like Terraform, CloudFormation, and Pulumi have unlocked incredible infrastructure automation capabilities that didn‘t seem possible just a few years ago.

Beyond productivity and cost benefits, IaC gives you built-in documentation of your infrastructure and enables collaboration through version control and testing.

As complexity continues growing, IaC will be crucial for managing dynamic, distributed systems efficiently and reliably. Operations teams have never been more empowered.

Low-Code/No-Code: Citizen Development Takes Off

Low-code/no-code platforms utilize visual, declarative interfaces that abstract away manual coding. They‘ve unlocked development capabilities for non-programmers and supercharged productivity for pro devs.

We‘re still in the early innings, but adoption is exploding as platforms expand beyond simple apps into complex business solutions:

  • Low-code app development is forecast to account for over 65% of all app dev by 2024 per Gartner. Traditional hand-coding can‘t keep up with demand.

  • By 2025, 70% of new applications will be created using low-code or no-code tech according to IDC. Fast iteration trumps pure technical complexity.

  • Low-code tools lead to 10x gains in developer productivity based on research by Forrester. Visually assembling apps is far faster than writing every line of code.

Empowering domain experts and business users to build their own solutions is a massive opportunity. But I think the biggest long-term impact will be for professional developers.

The right abstractions can free engineers from repetitive coding and allow them to focus on challenging problems that create real value. Less time spent on plumbing and wiring means more time innovating.

As low-code tools expand in capability, every developer will benefit by incorporating them into their workflows. Exciting times are ahead!

The CI/CD Pipeline: Automation from End to End

The continuous integration and continuous delivery pipeline forms the engine that drives DevOps velocity and consistency. CI/CD takes code changes through build, test, security scan, and deployment phases automatically.

But creating an effective CI/CD pipeline requires extensive investment:

  • On average, teams spend 200 engineering hours per month building and maintaining pipelines according to Codefresh data. It‘s a complex undertaking.

  • Despite the challenges, high performing teams deploy 46x more frequently than low performers thanks to advanced pipelines per Puppet‘s 2022 DevOps report.

  • 57% of developers cite waiting for feedback and approvals as their biggest bottleneck. Manual handoff points slow pipelines down drastically.

  • End-to-end CI/CD automation cuts cycle times by as much as 98% based on research by IBM.

It takes significant upfront work to build a smooth CI/CD assembly line. But the long-term productivity and speed gains are immense.

Forward-thinking organizations will continue investing in automating builds, tests, and deployments to remove friction from delivery workflows.

Kubernetes: The New Linux

Linux revolutionized the server OS market by offering an open alternative to expensive proprietary Unix systems in the 1990s. Today, Kubernetes is revolutionizing infrastructure management in a similar fashion.

Its rapid growth has been astounding:

  • Kubernetes adoption surged from 27% to 92% between 2017 and 2022 per the CNCF survey. It has become ubiquitous.

  • Atlassian migrated over 500 microservices running on 6,000 VMs to Kubernetes – reducing ops overhead by 50% per an AWS post.

  • By 2025, Gartner forecasts that 75% of global organizations will be running containerized applications in production, up from less than 30% in 2021.

Kubernetes provides a consistent abstraction layer that covers on-premise servers, VMs, and cloud infrastructure. Just as Linux did for operating systems, Kubernetes is becoming the standard substrate for deploying software.

Its flexibility has allowed for a vibrant and expansive ecosystem of tools to emerge. Kubernetes enables portability between environments and optimized resource utilization through containerization.

As infrastructure becomes increasingly complex, Kubernetes will continue gaining ground as the platform for deploying and scaling applications with efficiency and resilience. It truly does represent the operating system of the cloud.

Chaos Engineering: Testing Real-World Resilience

When building complex, distributed applications, you must engineer them to withstand failures and unpredictable conditions. No amount of happy path testing will uncover hidden dependencies or weak failure points.

This is where chaos engineering comes in. The idea is to proactively inject failures like shut down servers, clog networks, or delete cloud resources. If the systems continue operating normally, you gain confidence they can survive worst case scenarios.

Here are some revealing stats on the value of chaos engineering:

  • 33% of outages are caused by system failures versus just 2% from natural disasters according to research by IDC. Yet most tests focus on the unlikely rather than probable.

  • A single app failure costs an average of $100,000 per hour of downtime based on research from APM provider Instana. Outages add up fast.

  • Teams doing chaos engineering recover from incidents 96% faster than those who don‘t according to Gremlin‘s 2021 survey. Practice makes perfect when it comes to failure.

Organizations like Netflix pioneered chaos engineering and have inspired many others to follow suit. I believe exposing weaknesses through experiments and simulations will be crucial for any team running mission critical systems.

If you‘re not wreaking controlled havoc on your own infrastructure, that‘s a red flag!

GitOps: Version Control for the Entire Stack

We all know version control is essential for reliable software delivery. But most infrastructure changes are still made manually outside source control via configuration files and dashboards.

This lack of visibility into operations processes hinders collaboration and traceability. GitOps aims to fix that by versioning infrastructure changes and managing environments through Git in the same way developers manage code.

Adoption is accelerating rapidly:

  • 57% of organizations are already using GitOps according to the CloudOps 2022 survey. Developers are right at home with Git workflows.

  • Accelerate‘s 2022 DevOps research found elite performers are 7x more likely to use GitOps. It reduces errors and provides single source of truth.

  • Teams manage 50-60% less infrastructure with GitOps according to GitLab. Manual changes inevitably sprawl out of control.

  • 100% of teams using GitOps have expanded it to multiple teams and use cases per OpsLevel survey. The benefits become quickly apparent.

Version controlling everything as code, tracking changes, enabling collaboration, and automating workflows…what‘s not to love?

I think GitOps will inevitably become the standard for how both developers and IT ops professionals interact with and manage modern stacks. The future is versioned!

Now that we‘ve explored the key technology trends, let‘s shift gears and talk business outcomes. Adopting DevOps is a means towards an end, not an end unto itself!

Here are some of the data points that quantify the business impact of DevOps:

  • High performing teams spend 50% less on IT costs overall according to Puppet‘s 2022 DevOps Report. Automating manual work drastically reduces expenses.

  • DevOps leaders achieve 49% higher revenue growth than laggards according to research by Google Cloud. Faster delivery translates to faster growth.

  • Elite DevOps teams see 50% less unplanned work and remediate issues 5x faster per Puppet. Engineering productivity skyrockets.

  • Accelerate research shows elite DevOps teams achieve 2.2x greater customer satisfaction. Happier customers equal stronger businesses.

  • Organizations using DevOps practices earn 30% higher profits than competitors per Bain & Company. It pays to prioritize delivery.

The research conclusively shows that investing in DevOps practices translates to better financial results. Plus, developers are far less stressed when processes are streamlined!

Focusing on business value will be key for DevOps leaders. The tech enables the outcomes, but losing sight of those outcomes can lead teams down rabbit holes.

Well, that was certainly a lot of information to digest! Let‘s recap some of my key recommendations based on these trends:

  • Integrate security practices early and often. DevSecOps is non-negotiable in the modern era.

  • Leverage IaC and GitOps to tame complexity. Manual changes simply don‘t scale.

  • Standardize on Kubernetes for portable infrastructure. It‘s become the industry standard for a reason.

  • Add observability to the entire stack. You can‘t improve what you can‘t measure.

  • Fail proactively through chaos experiments. Discover weaknesses before they become outages.

  • Don‘t fear new approaches like low-code tools. They‘re force multipliers when used strategically.

  • Automate deployments end-to-end. Manual handoffs bog everyone down.

  • Focus on speed AND stability. Sacrificing one for the other is unwise long-term.

  • Evangelize DevOps throughout your org. These practices only work with broad participation.

The DevOps space will continue evolving rapidly. My advice is to stay curious, keep experimenting, and measure results. Understanding the tech is great, but prioritize outcomes over specific tools.

The companies that will lead the future are maniacally focused on delivering value faster to customers. DevOps capabilities can fuel that competitive advantage.

And remember – people and culture changes drive this transformation just as much as technology. Avoid common pitfalls like prioritizing velocity over quality or mandating tools without empathy. Work together, learn together, and improve together!

What questions do you have on the DevOps trends we covered? I‘m always happy to dive deeper into specifics. The fast pace of innovation certainly keeps us on our toes, but that‘s part of what makes it such a fun space to be in!

Let me know which trends you find most exciting and if you have any other insights to share. I look forward to hearing your perspective!


Written by Alexis Kestler

A female web designer and programmer - Now is a 36-year IT professional with over 15 years of experience living in NorCal. I enjoy keeping my feet wet in the world of technology through reading, working, and researching topics that pique my interest.