The 5 Cs you need to make DevOps your next career move

Published on: 20 Jul 2022

A career in DevOps offers IT professionals a wide range of possibilities. The positions are in high demand, with many businesses eager to take advantage of the cost savings and productivity benefits that a DevOps approach to software development can provide.

As a result, there are a wide range of opportunities with prospects for good pay and excellent benefits, as well as the chance for career advancement. This may be especially true if you're able to secure the security clearances necessary to work in restricted sectors such as government, defence or telecommunications.

But in order to successfully transition into DevOps roles, you'll need a few key skills. DevOps can be a wide-ranging role and requires a strong knowledge of both technical and 'soft' skills. However, there are a few common requirements that you'll likely find on every job description.

Many of these can be broken down into five key 'Cs' that can be helpful to bear in mind when determining what you need to do to succeed in this field. So what do these involve?

1. Coding

Strong coding skills are an essential requirement for anyone who wants to move into DevOps. While coding may not be the primary day-to-day job of a senior DevOps engineer, as they will more likely to focus on project management and leadership issues, these professionals will still need to monitor and review work and understand the detail behind the scenes.

A working knowledge of programming and scripting languages such as Python, Ruby, Python, Java, Javascript, PHP, Bash, Shell and Node.js will be among the most highly sought-after skills that employers are looking for.

2. Cloud

Much of DevOps work is dependent on cloud computing services, so a working knowledge of the unique demands and challenges that come with this model of operating will be another must-have. Cloud services deliver all the tools for testing, deploying and releasing code that are vital to a successful DevOps strategy, so most firms won't be able to function without these skills.

To showcase this, industry qualifications such as AWS Certified DevOps Engineer, Azure DevOps Engineer Expert or Google's Professional Cloud DevOps Engineer will be highly useful.

3. Continuous delivery and integration

A key part of DevOps is the ability to continuously iterate, upgrade and improve throughout the development and release process. Therefore, a solid understanding of continuous delivery (CD) and continuous integration (CI) processing is another essential skill.

This includes knowledge of automation tools, continuous monitoring solutions, deployment tools, and how to integrate different systems into a single platform in order to provide a streamlined way of working.

4. Communication

On the softer side, effective communication and collaboration skills are just as vital for successful DevOps engineers as technical skills. These professionals will be required to bring various teams from different parts of the business together, so their ability to clearly explain what's required, delegate responsibilities effectively and deliver updates to multiple stakeholders will all be important.

This is something recruiters may be especially focused on during interviews. They can tell from your CV what experience and certifications you have, but you'll need to showcase examples from your career that emphasise how you've achieved success.

5. Customer focus

Finally, you'll need a solid understanding of what your end-users will expect from a DevOps project. Customer satisfaction is always the end goal of these efforts, so it's important you can demonstrate you know who your stakeholders are and what success will look like to them.

This will vary depending on who your employer is and what their priorities are. For example, government organisations will need to keep costs down, but must ensure  they do not sacrifice usability, especially for public-facing applications. The ability to identify critical areas to prioritise and work with stakeholders to deliver value to customers cannot be overlooked if you're to succeed in senior DevOps engineer roles.

Think you have the skills needed to succeed in DevOps? Find out more about what DevOps jobs involve and check out our latest vacancies to find your next role today.