What Are the DevOps Roles?
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What Are the DevOps Roles?

Written by Harrison Clarke
3 minute read
Written by Harrison Clarke
3 minute read

What do tech giants like Amazon, Netflix, and Etsy have in common? They all use DevOps to ensure high-quality products and optimal stability. Now, more and more companies are making the push towards DevOps.

DevOps is a tech philosophy and culture that aims to improve collaboration between the software development and IT operations teams. Before DevOps, development and operations often worked in very siloed environments. This greatly affected the process between each department — lengthy backlogs and slower time to market and most importantly, little to help build a trusting and collaborative relationship between development and operations.

Thankfully, with the birth of DevOps, teaching teams of all sizes are seeing substantial increases in productivity and are finding themselves able to push out higher quality products faster than ever before.

To take a DevOps approach, you need to fill the right roles. Let’s look at some of the most popular positions that drive success.


SREs

Software-Engineer_Harrison-Clarke

Perhaps the most important role is that of the SRE, who serves as a hybrid of development and operations. Their objectives are reliability, availability, performance, and efficiency. They have the ability to apply a software development perspective to operational activities. They do many different things, including coding, automating, testing, monitoring, and triaging.

SRE Main Duties:

  • Writing codes for new products, features, security updates, and bug fixes
  • Building software to help DevOps, ITOps & support teams
  • Making sure all lines of code are up to business requirements
  • Performing unit testing
  • Performing deployments
  • Monitoring product performance


Developers

Developer_Harrison-Clarke

Developers write code and match the code to the business requirements. Often, developers participate in testing, deployment, and monitoring.

Developers main duties:

  • Writing codes
  • Participating in requirements definition
  • Estimating features
  • Creating unit tests
  • Deploying features to production
  • Monitoring the release code

Release Managers

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The release manager wears the project manager’s hat. They manage and coordinate the entire project. This process involves coordination between development, testing, and deployment. Progress is how they measure success. Their work also offers real visibility into the project.

Release Managers main duties:

  • Managing products and applications from development through deployment
  • Tracking progress of DevOps using impact and other key metrics


Automation Specialists

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Automation is at the core of DevOps, so it’s fitting that there is a specific role for it. Automation architects are responsible for creating a more efficient process and finding the right tools to use and integrate within a DevOps model to boost continuous deployments and ensure product availability.

Automation Specialists Main Duties:

  • Designing and establishing strategies for automating manual tasks
  • Discovering the right DevOps tools for different processes

Security Engineers (DevSecOps)

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“Secure by design” is the profile of DevSecOps (development, security, and operations). Engineers preach that everyone is responsible for security, and they seek to implement security protocols in conjunction with development and operations. Security and Compliance Engineers work closely with all departments and roles to ensure the company is being safe with its data and is in compliance with the necessary requirements.

Security Engineers main duties:

  • Ensuring products are in compliance with all established standards and regulations
  • Working alongside development to make sure product is safe and secure against possible attacks

QA Engineers

QA_Engineers_Harrison-Clarke

Quality assurance (QA) engineers spend most of their time testing products. They also document bugs, verifying their existence and their probable cause. QA engineers’ aim is for the product to be issue-free while also ensuring that the intended features and functions are present and optimal.

QA Engineers main duties:

  • Analyzing and clarifying requirements with a customer or a business analyst
  • Planning the process of testing
  • Writing test cases (test scripts)
  • Conducting functional testing
  • Identifying problem areas, adding them to a tracking system

Product Owners

product_owner_Harrison-Clarke

The Product Owner is the manager that connects customers with the DevOps team. Depending on your project, a PO can be somebody who knows your business and its customers, or a representative from an outsourcing company.

The main responsibility of a PO is communicating with stakeholders to define a coherent vision for the product. The Product Owner (PO) prioritizes the Team Backlog to streamline the execution of program priorities while maintaining the conceptual and technical integrity of the features or components for the team.

Product Owners main duties:

  • Participating and preparing in PI Planning
  • Understanding enabler work and participating in team demo and retrospective
  • Iterating Execution
  • Programming Execution

How these roles work together

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These roles in DevOps work in tandem to create a collaborative and efficient environment with common accountability of each product through development, deployment and monitoring. Building a DevOps team can highly improve the quality of products and applications, while also getting them to market faster. This leads to positive customer outcomes and a more collaborative software development and delivery process.

If you are working towards building a DevOps model, the most important step is to get the buy-in from your development and operations teams. Once you get that buy-in, you can start implementing the model that best suits your organization's needs.


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