DevOps is one of the hottest domains today. IT and Project Management professionals alike are increasingly interested in DevOps. You do not need an IT background if you are ready to walk through the paces and a steep learning curve. So how do you get into DevOps with no experience and without getting overwhelmed?
At the outset, let us explore DevOps and whether you are a good fit. And then understand whether it interests you. Will you be able to navigate the self-learning path and master all the basic concepts necessary for a DevOps job role? What are the skills and tools you must learn? Do you need to enroll for DevOps certification? Can you enter DevOps from a non-IT background?
Read on to understand the DevOps ecosystem, and be ready to register for an online course to upskill and get into DevOps.
What is DevOps
DevOps is a set of practices and a methodology that combines both Software Development (Dev) and IT Operations (Ops). According to AWS, it is “the combination of cultural philosophies, practices, and tools that increases an organization’s ability to deliver applications and services at high velocity.” It enables IT businesses to serve their customers better with timely testing, rollouts, and updates for a competitive edge in the industry.
Development and operations teams work seamlessly as a single team across the entire application lifecycle without any operational silos and undesired glitches. They use a technology stack and a bunch of automation tools to help roll out applications speedily and efficiently.
Is DevOps a good career option
If software development and testing interests you or Project Management is your forte, then DevOps is definitely for you!
DevOps is not only a lucrative career with senior positions within companies, but it is also a fascinating ecosystem that pushes you to the boundaries with its constant challenges and potential for career growth.
It offers upward mobility depending on the company and industry. While you may begin with an entry role for, say, a Junior Engineer or Manager, you have the potential to climb up to the job role of a DevOps Architect or even Departmental/IT Project Head, with good salary packages. DevOps also facilitates the transition to similar job roles like Site Reliability Engineer (SRE).
DevOps offers opportunities for horizontal mobility too, as the skills are industry-agnostic. Moreover, regardless of the type of software development, the work of DevOps is universal. This opens it up to a broad range of professionals whether from IT or process-related backgrounds.
With a skill shortage within the DevOps job market and hundreds of jobs across the country, DevOps offers exciting opportunities for one who has a thirst for knowledge and a desire to create an impact.
Does DevOps require coding skills?
DevOps requires coding. As the underpinning is automation, there are shell scripts, API calls, and automated provisioning tools to undertake the tasks. So a basic understanding of the software development lifecycle is necessary.
Even if you have not built an application from scratch, you will need to figure out how to compile code, read application logs, run tests, etc.
DevOps is a dynamic ecosystem with constantly evolving best practices and methodologies. You may need to revisit what you have learned in college and gets hands-on with projects and online Bootcamps.
How do you get into DevOps with no experience?
DevOps is a vast subject, and the best way to a short learning curve with no job experience is to whittle it down to niche in-demand tools and knowledge areas.
Explore the topics associated with DevOps and determine which area you would like to specialize in, such as release engineering, SRE, the cloud, and so on. Once you have decided, gain knowledge on these basic DevOps skills and turn them into advanced expertise on the go
The pathway to a DevOp job role
The role of the DevOps Engineer is a senior position requiring industry experience in either development or operations. If you have a degree in computer science or have developed software applications, you are well equipped to be a DevOps Engineer as these qualifications are industry-recognized.
What you need, however, are the following skills included in most certifications provide:
- Excellent knowledge of command line, especially Linux.
- Understanding of networking protocols
- Awareness of build and release in a development environment
- Knowledge of cloud infrastructure of AWS/VMWARE
- Familiarity with configuration management using tools like Puppet/ Salt/Ansible
- Programming skills like Java, Python, or C++; Shell Scripting / Python/ Perl
- Knowledge of source code management tools (GIT), CI tools for building ( Jenkins), and deployment.
- The idea of container and configuration technologies like Docker and Kubernetes.
- Get the hang of automation tools
- System administration and release management
- Knowledge of applications and how they are built, released, and run in production.
- Cloud service providers, basic applications, and services
- Understanding of software architecture (web servers, databases, etc.)
You do not have to know each of the above skills or every tool, but a general understanding of the skills mentioned and expertise in at least one, like Linux, is a great way to kick-start your DevOps career. Just as any fresher with no IT experience can get into programming, Cloud Computing Quality Assurance, etc., you too can start a career in DevOps with no previous experience. All you need is to observe and strategize your entry point into DevOps. You may have a steep learning curve, but do not allow this to dampen your career dreams in DevOps. Attend Bootcamps, take online courses, and learn the basic skills from the tons of resources available online and free-to-download books. Apply the tools and skills to your projects and assignments, and showcase your grasp of the subject.
Additional knowledge of the following will help you ace DevOps interviews:
- Knowledge of Software Development/Engineering or IT Operations, or both.
- Clarity on how the Software Development Life Cycle (SDLC) works.
- Familiarity with stages of the SDLC.
- Good understanding of how software development and testing work, how deployment and implementation execute, at which stage testing is done, and so on.
- Exposure to IT operations and methodologies
- Experimentation with SaaS, PaaS, and IaaS cloud services and platforms
At the end of the day, a fresher with no job experience cannot easily be a DevOps practitioner unless entering through a related background like software testing, software development, project management, and so on. So the secret sauce here is to gain specialization in any of the tools critical for a DevOps role and a certification that walks you through all the necessary fundamentals to ace a DevOps entry job.
Although the above may get you an entry job role, your career progression in DevOps depends upon how much effort you put in, the tools you learn, the certifications you gain, and your persistence.
DevOps techniques and tools to upskill in vary from job to job, so the list above is not exhaustive. Look for DevOps jobs online and check out their technical requirements to prepare yourself.
The upturn in the IT industry has created a rising demand for individuals with DevOps skills and experience. So if you are looking for a high-impact career with strong growth potential, this is the right time to enter. Do not allow your lack of experience to deter you. There are plenty of certifications that can make you job-ready in the DevOps job market.