What is a DevOps? A DevOps Engineer combines developing with IT operations to improve code deployments. The computer geeks love to help IT teams make all the moving parts work together more efficiently. They are the change management professionals of the IT world who also do all the normal things programmers do, like coding, playing video games, and eating pizza. A DevOps Engineer sits precisely at the intersection between developers who write the programs that make our software run and the IT network professionals behind the scenes that maintain the computers and servers that the programs run on.
DevOps professionals work to improve the release times of new software and updates to software. Their goal is to hit continuous deployment, which is a recursive loop of feedback between the end users (that’s you and me) to the software developers creating an update to the network engineers and then back out the door with a new improvement for you to try. If you’ve ever been a first generation user of a software application you know it can be glitchy. A version two takes your pain and funnels into a better piece of software. And so on through version three and four and…you get the idea.
The DevOps Engineers goal is to have fewer glitches in each version and shortened tie between the fixes. DevOps Engineers spend a lot of time developing, testing, and deploying software products. They work with teams of Project Managers, Back End Developers, Front End Developers, UI Developers, and more technology professionals to push out new software products and code version releases to end users.
The DevOps Engineer is passionate about coding and the software lifecycle. They also enjoy system administration, which is the backend computer network behind the software that we often don’t see. Their goal is to improve the planning, testing, and deployment of software, and they do anything possible to keep things moving forward.
There are wide variations in job descriptions out there on the Internet for the DevOps Engineer. You’ll even find different job titles. If you’re interested in DevOps, look for roles like
- DevOps Evangelist
- Release Manager
- Automation Expert
- Software Developer
- Software Tester
- Quality Assurance
- Security Engineer
Despite the variances in job titles the number one skill that every DevOps Engineer needs to have is troubleshooting. Every DevOps Engineer needs to know enough about the front, middle, and backend of a software deployment so that, no matter what happens, they can fix it. They are often the first to deal with a customer issue and the last to touch the new software version before it’s deployed. This means these talented professionals must have the following hard skills:
- Computer coding
- Customer service
- Data analysis
- Network security
- Project management
- Software testing
They must also exhibit these soft skills:
- Conflict resolution
- Critical thinker
- Handles pressure
- Sense of humor
- Team player
- Time management
When something goes wrong with the software, it’s the DevOps Engineer that fields complaints from developers, customers, project managers, business leaders, and all kinds of other stakeholders. It can be a high-pressure job but DevOps professionals are up to the challenge as they keep their eyes firmly focused on the goal of streamlined and continuous software deployment.
Suggested Software Proficiency
Many DevOps Engineers start out as junior or apprentice software developers and branch out into DevOps. It’s true that DevOps Engineers usually have coding or scripting skills in languages like Python, Node.js, Linux, Ruby, Pearl, or Java. But they also need to know:
- Cloud platforms like AWS, Azure, Google
- Configuration management
The requirements at each job are usually different, but generally, the DevOps Engineer needs to use these software tools to do the job:
- For version control—Git, Github, Bitbucket, Svn, or VSTS
- For continuous integration— Jenkins, Bamboo, or VSTS
- For automation testing—Selenium, VSTS, or Octopus Deploy
- For infrastructure automation—Puppet, Chef or Ansible
- For containerizing software—Docker or LXD
- For orchestration—Kubernetes, Mesos, or Swarm
- For cloud deployment—AWS, Azure, GoogleCloud, or Openstack
- For deployed code monitoring—Nagios
The DevOps Engineer must be very familiar with the software lifecycle and comfortable working at any point in the continuum. They must be able to support both internal and external customers on multiple platforms. They must also know project management techniques like Agile, Scrum, and Waterfall.
Find Your DevOps Engineer Here
DevOps Engineers are part of the creative evolution of software deployment. Artisan Talent works with these professionals to place them in challenging positions in companies just like yours. Whether you are looking for a DevOps Engineer to improve your software deployments or currently serving as a DevOps Engineer, Artisan Talent can help. Start the conversation.