If your company is still shackled to the traditional development cycle, microservers can help break you free and provide better outcomes for your customers.
With microservices, updates and new features can be added very quickly, since you no longer need to wait for work on every part of the application to be completed before you can deploy. You can also rest easier knowing that if one part of the application were to fail, the rest can remain up and running.
Say you have an online retail business. With traditional development, any changes to your application — even on the back end — would involve a complicated schedule of updates and full-app testing just to make a single feature update.
There were two major problems with this approach. One: if one aspect of your change failed, so could your application. Two: it was extremely inefficient, since work on the application took a long time to complete and even longer to deploy.
Microservices, on the other hand, essentially break up your application into small pieces that can be upgraded and iterated upon, independent of the rest of your code.
This means you can deploy small, iterative updates several times a day instead of all at once. It also means that if there’s a flaw in one microservice section, the rest of your app keeps humming.
The DevOps environment
For DevOps teams, microservices provide extreme flexibility and freedom by making CI/CD pipelines possible. The ability to achieve continuous innovation and continuous development greatly accelerates the entire development process. Additionally, being able to quickly roll back changes, without disrupting the application as a whole, severely limits downtime.
Microservices have their own complications, though, since the more you create for an application, the more challenging it becomes to keep everyone working in concert.
To deal with this issue, DevOps teams need to employ containers to ensure all the microservices are organized, then use Kubernetes to help ensure all the containers — and the microservices inside them — are able to keep chatting away so the application works as intended.
While embracing containers and Kubernetes comes with a learning curve, especially for companies in the early stages of a DevOps transition, the added technical layers are well worth the effort.
Gaining a competitive edge with microservices
Companies that have embraced a microservices environment are able to drastically speed up the development and deployment of products. This usually translates into a faster time to market and a competitive advantage.
They’re also able to reduce costs by giving DevOps teams the freedom they need to be more creative and efficient — another leg up on the competition, since operations can be streamlined across the board.
Of course, not every company is in a position to dive right into microservices and start seeing these benefits.
That’s why we’ve published 3 Simple Steps to Applying the Technical Maturity Framework When Going Cloud-Native, a free eBook that walks you through every step of transition to microservices, DevOps, and the cloud. You can download it here.
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