Database operations and devops

Traditionally database operations has been a highly specialized field within it-operations. So much so that many organizations
operate with platform specific dba teams. Because of the amount of platform specific know-how needed to perform the dba role, there
has been lite mobility between the dba role other roles within it, let alone the development part of the organization.

In a devops environment there is no room for the platform specific dba teams. There is rarely enough dba tasks in a single team to have a full time dba.
Therefore the tasks associated with the traditional dba role will often have to be done by someone without the focus and know-how of the traditional dba.

On the other hand by moving the dba tasks in to the application teams the databases can be managed in a way that is customized to the relevant applications and
usage patterns. We observe that organizations implementing this customization experience significant boosts to the productivity and quality of their database operations.

The developers will be much more likely to take the dba’s needs into account while developing the software if they are in the same team. Over time
this leads to software that is better fits the profile of the base technologies. Maintaining a system that is a good fit for the platform is significantly easier and
more productive.

Bringing dev to database ops

The devops movement strongly values automation and tooling. The ability to automate tasks is perhaps the most important
contribution of the developers to the ops part of the team. Done right this can significantly improve the quality of operations
while enabling many agile practices, such as continues deployment and automated testing and measurements.

Similar interface for different platforms

Staffing a devops organization can be tricky. It is paramount that each devops team has access to skills and experience in order to execute
all needed tasks. It might not be possible to find people with the right skill-set to cover all the details of running database operations. When the needs of a project changes it will be
necessary to restaff the projects in order to adapt to the new skill requirements. Learning a new database platform is possible, but it ads to the amount
of work the new staff will have to do before they can contribute to the project.
Using the same software solution to manage the different database platforms will improve the usefulness of newly transferred project members significantly.

Company quality baseline

Even though devops advocates self sufficient teams, in bigger devops organizations it can be useful to have
people working cross teams in order to secure a quality baseline. The cross team teams would have to communicate
with the product teams and review the products in order to work towards this goal. Using dbWatch as a common monitoring and reporting
solution would allow such a team to automate many of the rules that make up such a quality baseline.


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