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Moogsoft 2023 Predictions: Change, Automation and DevOps


Industry executives and experts share their predictions for 2023.  Read them in this 15th annual series exclusive.

Change, Automation and DevOps

By Richard Whitehead, Chief Evangelist at Moogsoft

In today's enterprise IT landscape, leaders must think several steps ahead of their competition - and themselves. That entails thinking smart, not just fast.

Many IT leaders solve problems by expanding their tech stacks. But this MO can drive technical debt, contribute to extended system downtimes and create a fragile data ecosystem. And in 2023, those problems will be aggravated by an IT market experiencing scaled-back budgets and an extended talent shortage. It's high time for IT leaders to step back and assess the utility of their existing processes.

For example, many companies spend big on monitoring tools but neglect to add an intelligent-correlation layer. In other words, they're collecting immense amounts of data they cannot process or understand. That's problematic because inaccurate understandings of data and system downtime are primary drivers of unmet or even violated service level agreements (SLAs).

Leaders are catching wise to this problem. To solve it, they'll turn to AI and DevOps - if they haven't already. Let's discuss these and other drivers for business innovation in 2023.

Change management will receive the AI treatment

Change management is notoriously difficult to get right. Not only does the process invite concerns about system interoperability and 24/7 performance, but there's also the human element of organizational change. Proper change management requires constant communication with direct reports, collaboration among disparate teams and trust in all directions. To facilitate these needs, leadership must be incredibly present and committed to the cause. As such, IT leaders are increasingly turning to processes that expedite and improve the implementation side of change management. Enter: AI.

Early iterations of AI in change management have been rather successful. The most promising technologies parse data from newly implemented tech to isolate possibly code-breaking errors. Once a problematic node is identified, the system determines its relative importance using machine learning (ML). This information guides the system's ability to address the error before it becomes a consumer-facing issue and without compromising other functionalities.

Although at-first challenging for developers, this process becomes more robust by the day. Moogsoft developers tackled a similar hurdle in building Vertex Entropy, a graph theory-based AIalgorithm that identifies which nodes are most likely to be causing problems under any given set of conditions. Instead of requiring massive amounts of information, Vertex Entropy operates using only a local subset of data points. This AI-backed capability will be instrumental for change management moving forward.

AI will overtake automation

In our software-defined world, almost every procedure can be automated. The decision or trigger point for automation deployment, however, remains tricky. Leaders must carefully consider the ROI based on several lines of questioning, including whether automation can accomplish tasks at the same level as a human worker, if not higher. Often, the answer is "no." Why? Automation operates under an "if-this-then-that" ruleset that precludes intelligent decision-making irrespective of a human administrator.

On the other hand, AI is capable of making less brittle decisions based on existing system data and complex algorithms. Modern iterations of AI accelerate the decision-making and implementation processes, much like automation, though with better results. We're starting to see this realization dawn across leaders in several industries. As it does, AI will overtake automation in terms of adoption across the entire business lifecycle, improving generalized efficiency and performance.

DevOps-forward organizations will excel

The definition of "DevOps" is fluid. More than a technology, the set of principles and practices adopted by DevOps teams represents a culture - which means widespread adoption requires a paradigm shift. Easier said than done, right?

Still, DevOps adoption is critical for all modern organizations. "Technology" no longer describes the toolkit that sets a business' internal operations apart from or ahead of its competitors. Software is the realm in which teams reach their customers, be it through e-commerce platforms or social media. An IT team's internal operations should reflect this shift toward digital-first operations by prioritizing DevOps, a philosophy that leads to reliable and faster deployment, not to mention better security and scalability.

As the number of people conversant and comfortable with DevOps grows, adoption will snowball. Organizations that do so sooner rather than later will ultimately win out, as they will reach DevOps maturity much faster than their competition. And in the modern world, maturity in a DevOps team is synonymous with success.




As Moogsoft's chief evangelist, Richard brings a keen sense of what is required to build transformational solutions. A former CTO and technology VP, Richard brought new technologies to market and was responsible for strategy, partnerships and product research. Richard served on Splunk's Technology Advisory Board through their Series A, providing product and market guidance. He serves as an Ambassador for the DevOps Institute, and recently co-chaired the ONUG Monitoring & Observability Working Group. Richard holds three patents and is considered dangerous with JavaScript.

Published Tuesday, January 24, 2023 7:32 AM by David Marshall
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