Common DevOps Obstacles

By Richard Striedl Practice Lead, DevOps
Common DevOps Obstacles

Only 20 percent of enterprises that have attempted to implement DevOps have fully deployed it, according to CA Technologies. Moonshot, working with an outside research firm, recently surveyed U.S. senior IT professionals involved in DevOps adoption to find out why the adoption rate isn’t higher. We uncovered a number of roadblocks hampering DevOps – and all of those obstacles center around the organization’s people, processes, and technology.

We conducted the survey, augmented by detailed conversations with senior professionals, as we researched our report, A Guide for Successful DevOps Adoption (available on request). We wanted to understand the critical success factors for DevOps taking hold – and the stumbling blocks. In fact, our survey found enterprise executives grappling with several roadblocks. Here are the most common ones:


What stands out is how many of those roadblocks pertain to managing people, processes, and technology effectively – especially people and processes. Notice how four out of the top five roadblocks relate to personnel issues, such as a lack of relevant training and misalignment of responsibilities across people and teams. And the biggest obstacle comes down to poor allocation of resources.

Poor resource allocation has serious consequence. For example, overburdening certain employees with excessive workload due to poor resource management and a lack of skill diversity hampers productivity and leads to employee burnout.

These people and process related problems are not surprising. They stem from two inter-related, common myths of DevOps. One of those myths is that people who have DevOps experience somehow possess a specialty skill that is not honed through training – as if DevOps experts are gifted with some innate super talent, like athletes, and that proper project management and resource management are not required. Second, enterprises assume DevOps tools are more important than investing in people and process changes. As a result, ground-level teams perceived to be the “DevOps experts” are being charged with making some big-time decisions about technology without any regard for integrating that technology properly with processes and the right resources.

But those obstacles are not insurmountable. Our research shows that enterprises can overcome those roadblocks by creating a DevOps roadmap and following a structured implementation approach. We recommend a five-step approach that tackles issues such as aligning organizational strategy and assessing a business’s DevOps maturity. Moonshot articulates our approach, along with more detailed survey findings, in A Guide for Successful DevOps Adoption. This report is a procedural guide for enterprises that are adopting or plan to adopt DevOps.

For more insight, contact Moonshot.

See also: “Why DevOps Needs a Strategy,” February 26, 2019.

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