Remote working is here to stay, so it’s vital that businesses understand how to get the best out of their staff. For some roles, working remotely is easier than others - DevOps employees, for example, can face challenges if they’re not fully supported within the organisation. In a distributed workforce, there’s a higher risk of security issues and application problems, so it’s crucial that organisations support them to keep the organisation running smoothly. Here are 6 ways to do just that.
Migrate operations to the cloud
Cloud infrastructures should be at the core of any remote DevOps team, enabling staff to work from any location efficiently without reliance on a single data centre or physical location. While many organisations have some dependence on cloud software, there needs to be an acceleration for more operational areas to allow for hybrid working models. Businesses can deploy open source data infrastructures to the cloud to make it easier for team members to access the information they need for projects while also enabling a faster operational pace and innovation.
Make collaboration and communication a focus
Communication in a remote role is always an essential skill to have, but it’s particularly important for DevOps and tech staff. DevOps teams need to be communicating continuously to maintain organised and efficient processes, and to work well with other teams across the business. In order to support remote DevOps staff, ensure that application metrics are communicated clearly so that everyone is working from the same page and is fully aligned with the wider goals of the business. Collaborative tools like video conferencing software, project management dashboards and have informal brainstorming sessions to foster creativity and innovation.
Utilise agile CI/CD
CI/CD - continuous integration and continuous delivery - is one of the foundations of DevOps systems, and it’s always been focused on adding flexibility to building and deploying software. But where remote teams are concerned, this needs to be even more agile and adaptive. The primary reason for this is that remote users need the ability to roll out changes quickly, especially as businesses have had to quickly close offices in light of the pandemic. In such circumstances, DevOps teams need to be able to deploy new software or features quickly to support the rest of the business.
Automate security monitoring
DevOps employees need to be alerted to security issues all the time, and be able to track problems as and when they arise. Automated monitoring of online performance, for software and applications, can help to stay one step ahead of threats and minimise any potential deployment issues. Automated tools will send alerts to team members and enable them to view data in real-time, as well as helping mitigate future issues through analysing this data and spotting trends about application performance and data usage.
Make sure meetings are intentional
Meetings can often become scheduled out of habit rather than being productive, but when you’re working with remote staff, whether the whole team is remote or not, it’s important to ensure that there’s a purpose to meeting. How can the time be put to best use to maximise efficiency and productivity while you have everyone in one place? Are you meeting to brainstorm ideas or to come to a decision on a project? How can everyone put their ideas and opinions forward in a constructive way. Ensure that there’s a clear point to the meeting, that everyone is clear on, so that staff can come prepared.
Invest in the right tools
DevOps teams may include full-time and part-time remote workers, from product managers to software engineers and more. It’s vital that the team has the right tools to do their jobs properly, as remote work requires careful execution and techniques compared to in-house teams. Make sure that the team has access to tools such as GSuite, video conferencing software like Zoom and GitHub. Messaging tools such as Slack are also ideal for quick updates and making sure that questions are answered swiftly to enable everyone to get on with their work without being slowed down.
Remote work has forced organisations to adapt and break down traditional structures, and this is particularly true of DevOps teams. But this is a positive step that provides businesses with the opportunity to develop better systems and processes. Finding ways to support DevOps professionals as they deal with remote challenges is the key to ensuring that the business runs smoothly, whether that’s transitioning between a hybrid model of working in-office and remotely, or adapting to being a fully remote company.