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DevOps vs Agile: The Key Differences

Ojash Yadav - June 18, 2022

The two software development processes DevOps and Agile both have the goal of getting an end-product out as quickly and efficiently as possible. Agile uses an incremental approach to finalize software while DevOps brings all the tasks together. Although many organizations are eager to employ these two practices, there is often confusion between them.

In DevOps , two large, separate teams will collaborate to ensure a faster software release. In Agile processes , small teams or individuals will work together to react quickly to develop software in accordance with customers’ changing needs.

Agile and DevOps are complementary, so they can be used together. DevOps uses pipelines to allow for continuous deliveries of applications, while Agile lets the user easily alter the app in line with necessary changes. Keep reading to learn more about each method and expand your coding knowledge .

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What Is DevOps?

DevOps stands for development and operations. It increases an organization’s ability to quickly complete services such as application development.

These practices are all about removing barriers between traditionally isolated teams and functions. With DevOps, development and operations teams work hand-in-hand throughout the software production process.

The objective of DevOps is to improve connections between software developments and information technology . This is done by promoting communication and collaboration between the two departments. DevOps was derived from Agile software development, born from the need to keep up with the higher rate of software development.

Quality assurance and security are also part of some DevOps models. If security is the focus, this is called DevSevOps.

What Is Agile?

Agile methodologies use feedback cycles to continuously improve a software product. In the process, a project is broken down into smaller parts, with the goal of delivering products in short two-week cycles, called iterations.

Agile is a global movement that has extended beyond the software industry. It enables organizations to monitor developments in multiple projects simultaneously. Agile is iterative, which means the processes are completed in pieces, with each piece building on the previous one.

Besides productivity in software development , another goal of Agile is to change a team’s mindset, encouraging them to work together and keep customers happy.

Agile vs DevOps: The Most Important Differences and Similarities

Agile focuses on collaboration, customer feedback, and small software releases. DevOps is an exercise of bringing development and operations groups together.

DevOps requires a larger team that is focused on operational and business, while Agile requires a much smaller team and is focused on function.

Agile and DevOps are similar because they are both used to enhance productivity. If they are used together, Agile methods can help DevOps reach its goals faster, while DevOps can ensure that Agile is thorough.

Difference: Methodology and Deployment

Agile methodology is an incremental approach that is not focused on launching software, but on making continuous developments. DevOps is a set of philosophies and practices that uses pre-built software to achieve goals.

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Difference: Team Size

Agile uses small team sizes. DevOps, on the other hand, requires the cooperation of two large teams.

Difference: Difference in Planning

These processes develop apps through very different planning processes. In Agile, developers regularly create new versions and updates While DevOps is used to improve operations.

Similarity: Goal of Enhanced Productivity

Both DevOps and Agile are reliable approaches to software development. They both are used to push teams to work quickly to achieve a goal.

Similarity: Collaboration

Teamwork is another common feature of DevOps and Agile. In each, teams are required to come together to share updates regarding their progress.

Similarity: Lean Philosophy

Both Agile and DevOps have extensively adopted and implemented the lean philosophy to improve communication.

DevOps vs Agile: Pros and Cons

There are pros and cons to using both DevOps and Agile.

Adopting either Agile or DevOps practices in software development can be difficult. The first step to overcoming potential obstacles is to understand the strengths and weaknesses of each and the roles the methodologies play.

DevOps Pros

  • Advanced sales time . Since DevOps methodology is based on developing software quickly, more products will be available to consumers at a faster rate.
  • Cost reduction. Companies that have shifted from Agile to DevOps have reported an average annual cost reduction of 20 percent.
  • Business benefits. DevOps offers fast delivery features and stable working environments. It also allows for more time to innovate and create new software rather than to fix and maintain old editions.
  • Effective launches. When using DevOps, it’s the responsibility of the entire team to release new functions and applications. With so many people coming together, these launches can have a greater impact.

DevOps Cons

  • Integration challenges : Adopting a radically new methodology requires a lot of training. In addition, an organization will need to standardize the new policies and processes.
  • Automated testing : Most businesses prefer using continuous integration to run tests on new products, but DevOps uses automated testing.
  • Relatively high costs: Large investments of time and money are involved in implementing DevOps.

Agile Pros

  • Responding to change. The biggest advantage of Agile practices is the focus on responding to change and to customers’ problems. This allows developers to feel valued and effective.
  • Accepting uncertainty. Agile developments allow teams to accept the unknown by encouraging discovery and experimentation.
  • Faster review cycle. Agile practices control the amount of work that’s underway to ensure tasks are completed in a reasonable time frame, based on customers’ requests.
  • Flexibility in releases. In traditional approaches, new features are released when all work is completed. But in Agile approaches, it provides sufficient functionality.
  • Less preparation work. In agile processes, a problem is identified, then developers will design, specify, and revise their work in line with the issue. This results in high upfront costs, but less up-front work.

Agile Cons

  • Lack of understanding. Many people don’t understand the processes of Agile, especially that the system is not concerned with the impact on other businesses and products.
  • Cultural fit. Few corporate cultures are prepared for the progressive and flexible nature of Agile.
  • Lack of consistency. A lack of consistency in Agile methodologies means it is more difficult to predict outcomes. It can complicate budgeting, marketing plans, and investor pitches.
  • Challenges at scale. In recent years, there have been many attempts at building scalable Agile models, but they have faced a lot of challenges as it was not designed for use by large teams.

Should You Use DevOps or Agile?

a  confused person
DevOps and Agile have their differences, but there are advantages to both in the workplace.

If you want, you can even use DevOps and Agile simultaneously. Otherwise, you might want to choose the one that suits the size and goals of your company.

Advantages of Choosing DevOps

  • The time it takes to implement new services is greatly reduced. It also saves on maintenance and upgrade costs.
  • It standardizes processes while enabling software to be released much quicker.
  • It ensures that there is no waste or misuse of resources invested in cloud infrastructure, analytics, and database management.
  • DevOps allows for easier collaboration between large teams of developers and operations employees.

Advantages of Choosing Agile

  • Agile is associated with a high level of customer satisfaction due to its rapid and continuous delivery of useful software.
  • The process focuses on technical excellence and good design.
  • Since there are set time limits for each individual task in Agile, the cost and time frame are predictable.
  • The system helps businesses increase their value by putting the onus on clients to determine which features they want to prioritize. By breaking the project into units, a team can focus on the quality of their work.

While DevOps uses a programmed, constant pipeline to continually deliver results, Agile allows businesses to quickly make necessary adjustments.

Agile focuses on using team communication to carry out mid-project changes, while DevOps unites the software development and operations teams in a continuous process.

Review the differences between DevOps vs Agile again to make an informed decision on which to use going forward.

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Ojash Yadav

About the author: Ojash is a writer at Career Karma, where he covers web development, tech careers, and trends in higher education. Ojash completed his degree in Digital Marketing from Digital Technology Institute and has taken on several online training programs where he learned web development and other vital tech skills. Ojash joined the Career Karma team in November 2020.

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