By Joe Kim, SolarWinds EVP, Engineering and Global CTO


My colleague Patrick Hubbard made some interesting predictions about 2017 for government IT professionals, and how DevOps culture could change the landscape. I’d like to share them with you now, as we approach Q4, to see how his predictions have played out so far.


If there is one thing government organizations are used to, it’s change. Budgets, technology, and policies are constantly changing, and there’s no surprise that the IT professional’s role is constantly evolving.


Not only do government IT professionals have to deal with the usual difficulties of trying to keep up with new technology, such as cloud, containers, microservices, and the Internet of Things (IoT), they also need to deal with budget cuts, restrictive policies, and a lack of resources. It is now more important than ever to scrap the traditional siloed IT roles, such as network, storage, and systems administrators.


A general, holistic approach to government IT

Having generalists is particularly important within government IT, where resources and budgets may be stretched. The ability to have a holistic understanding of the IT infrastructure and make quick and informed decisions is crucial over the next year and beyond.


2017 is likely to bring new machine-based technologies and the continued adoption of DevOps, which encourages collaboration between siloed IT departments. Government IT professionals need to expand their viewpoints to focus on tools and methodologies they may not be immediately familiar with to prepare for and manage next-generation data centers.


Leave the automation to machines

As predicted, new machine-based technologies are going to become better and more sophisticated over time. Before technology, such as bots and artificial intelligence, is leveraged, new management and monitoring processes will need to be introduced to government organizations.


DevOps culture is coming

DevOps describes the culture and collaboration of the development and operations teams that is geared toward software development. The transition to DevOps is certainly not without its challenge, however. By leveraging these principles, government organizations can be well on their way to reap the benefits of an integrated DevOps mentality.


DevOps is a positive organizational movement that will help government organizations empower IT departments to innovate. It also has the potential to improve agility, deliver innovation faster, provide higher quality software, better align work and value, and give the ability to respond to problems or changes.


The role of the government IT professional is constantly evolving. Since the good old days, when IT pros did little more than assist when emails stopped working, they now have much more power to shape the wider business strategy due to the reliance on technology for everyday tasks. By staying relevant and maintaining a general knowledge across the entire IT infrastructure, embracing a collaborative DevOps culture, and being open-minded to the integration of machines, government IT professionals will find themselves prepared for the changes that are coming their way.

Find the full article on Adjacent Open Access.