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How DevOps is transforming software architecture

DevOps has been widely praised for the way it is has brought development and operations teams closer together, but this is not the only impact it’s having on business processes.

Software architecture is also being disrupted by DevOps and businesses are reaping the benefits.

Software architects are increasingly collaborating with DevOps teams, ensuring that software retains a real-world focus. Software architects can have reputations for pie-in-the-sky thinking, but by bringing them into the DevOps fold they gain a greater awareness of key operational issues. Exposed to both the front-end and back-end, architects and DevOps teams experience a more holistic software development ecosystem.

The flexibility that DevOps demands is also having an impact on software architecture. Continuous deployment means that software updates should be seamlessly and rapidly integrated, but software architecture has traditionally been difficult to change – creating tension between internal teams that ultimately have the same goal.

As a result, software architecture is increasingly taking a microservices-based approach, where smaller, agile teams solve problems independently, reducing dependence on other teams and software functions and making change easier to implement.

This also results in software architecture becoming more complex, which brings both advantages and disadvantages. For software architects, their job becomes more interesting because they now have to recognise how all the various microservices interact and integrate with one another.

The microservices approach, however, also introduces more opportunities for failure, so your software architecture must be resilient and able to deal with potential issues while minimising disruption to other services.

In the era of DevOps and continuous deployment, software architecture cannot continue to resist change. Although traditional practices have been disrupted, the transition towards a microservices approach to architecture is greatly enhancing business agility.

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