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Dynatrace 2021 Predictions: Why this will be the year of DevSecops, the autonomous cloud, and user experiences

vmblog 2021 prediction series 

Industry executives and experts share their predictions for 2021.  Read them in this 13th annual series exclusive.

2021 Outlook: Why this will be the year of DevSecops, the autonomous cloud, and user experiences

By Ajay Gandhi, VP Product Marketing, Dynatrace

2020 was the year digital transformation went universal, for reasons both predictable and completely unpredictable. While nobody may have seen coming a pandemic that would disrupt ordinary life across the globe, some of its consequences - shifts to digital services like remote working, virtual schooling, curbside deliveries, and telehealth - were accelerated because so many organizations had already been planning their digital transformations to support these needs.

Some organizations were caught by surprise and overwhelmed. But others that had invested in robust digital experiences, supported by capabilities like AI-assistance and continuous automation, were ahead of the curve on digital transformation and able to meet the moment head on.

As disruptive as 2020 was, it actually accelerated trends that were happening anyway, like digital transformation. That was the case in 2020, and I believe it will also be the case with these three trends as we kick off 2021.

A DevSecOps approach to application security will form a new focus for digital transformation

Traditional app security models are buckling under the pressure of dynamic cloud-native environments and applications like Kubernetes, mobile, and serverless. The monitoring tools that organizations have in place to catch vulnerabilities create blind spots and bottlenecks that are only growing, not shrinking. This problem is made worse by siloed teams, manual processes, and vulnerabilities missed in preproduction and production environments.

An integrated DevSecOps approach will mark a huge strategic turning point for digital transformation this year. To focus on real security alerts and not false positives, to understand vulnerabilities in context and not miss them entirely, and to remediate these problems before they can make an impact, organizations will increasingly integrate application security practices into their DevOps workflows and adopt new DevSecOps processes. Taken together, the pivot to DevSecOps as part of a wider observability strategy will integrate security vulnerability management into the software delivery workflow, which can dramatically speed up risk and impact analysis, and remediation, across release cycles in preproduction and production environments.

Conquering cloud complexity will require auto-remediating cloud operations

The accelerating pace of investments in, and adoption of, cloud-native architectures is likewise accelerating the pace of complexity. That spike in cloud complexity burdens day-to-day operations, making it harder just to keep the lights on in an organization, much less drive new innovations. This increased burden also stretches IT teams thin at a time when they can't be stretched any further.

DevSecOps teams can alleviate these burdens several ways. One, integrating AIOps and application security so their organizations can more quickly adapt operations to the needs of their software development and delivery pipelines. Two, automating anomaly detection and remediation, which will significantly ease the demands on teams who are already dealing with an impossible-to-manage volume of system alerts. And three, leverage solutions like PagerDuty, JIRA, ServiceNow, and xMatters to streamline and automate DevOps toolchains and incident workflows.

Taken together, these autonomous, auto-remediating cloud operations provide the foundation for transforming how teams work and fueling the collaboration and innovation needed to drive positive business outcomes.

User experience will become increasingly integral to digital service capacity

2020 was a proving ground for how successful digital transformations are by the user experience they can provide. User experience lessons will be essential for how organizations build on their transformations. Digital transformation is more than just adopting cloud-native tech; it's about staying truly connected to customers, and the ability to be responsive, nimble, and reliable in all situations.

To ensure they're accurately predicting their users' needs and meeting those needs with agility and precision, deep real-time visibility into the user experience - visibility that offers an outside-in perspective on all application, infrastructure, and server performance - will form the core of a new wave of digital transformations. Hand-in-hand with that will be the need to accurately assess and remediate performance issues (and their business impacts) through a synthesis of application performance, real user behavior, and business KPI data - all alongside the integration of AI-assistance to empower IT teams in predicting and optimizing full-stack performance and user experiences.

2020 has shown us that some trends transcend even major disruptions to organizations and everyday life. That was the case with digital transformation last year, and will continue to be the case with DevSecOps, autonomous cloud operations, and the role of the user experience in 2021.


About the Author

Ajay Gandhi 

Ajay Gandhi is the VP of product marketing at Dynatrace. Prior to joining Dynatrace, Ajay helped launch other groundbreaking software platforms at Salesforce, Informatica, Shape Security and BEA.

Published Thursday, January 28, 2021 7:40 AM by David Marshall
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