Promise and peril in the journey to DevOps

Steep learning curves, cultural warfare and unbridled criticism are among the land mines littering the path to DevOps. However, plenty of perks await organizations that complete the trek successfully.

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Like many organizations today, Nationwide must regularly churn out new software applications to stay competitive in a crowded industry.

But the insurance and financial services company wasn't always able to keep up with demand. For years, Nationwide relied on 23 business unit IT shops, each of which used its own hodgepodge of tools and methodologies, to create new products and services. That is, until DevOps technology director Carmen DeArdo realized that Nationwide's "monolithic" approach to developing apps was resulting in bloated project teams, sprawling design plans and painfully slow software development life cycles.

Rather than throw more staff at the problem, DeArdo opted to migrate from the stilted world of waterfall development to a DevOps culture of collaboration.

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