DevOps – New business frontier for system integrators

By: Pratik Singh, Senior Presales Consultant, CA Technologies

Digital Transformation is changing the way old and new businesses work. And this is true for all industry verticals.

So, how does it affect the system integrator (SI) and service provider (SP) markets?

As with any transformation, Digital Transformation introduces change and managing change has always been difficult. But, as we will see, having a strategy and an execution plan will prove to be the new business frontier for System Integrators and Service Providers.

It all begins with an A-ha moment. Sometime back, we were talking with a testing SP, and discussing the potential ways in which Digital Transformation driven by DevOps would help them create new markets and new business models. While discussing the Service Virtualization technology, a key for DevOps, we explained how it could help reduce defects and help with better testing and hence better software. “So, it can work for Performance Testing?” was a follow up. And our answer was “Yes, why not!”

That was the A-ha moment for the SP. Since, they can now offer more outcome based testing to their clients, and ensure the testing as part of their statement of work (SOW) will be better in quality. And, also help performance test with more realistic behaviour, this allows better estimations in sizing and capacity for the client’s applications. For SI’s with a SLA driven approach towards engagements, it means being able to deliver services better and ensuring that for service delivery, quality can be easily quantified.

So for the SI, the conversation with their customer was no longer around pricing only, but around better outcomes and more value. It was also an opportunity for them to become trusted partners from being seen as mere vendors.

Another scenario with a different SI was again around Service Virtualization, but this time for them to address a specific vertical – aviation, and thus enter a new market. Businesses are always careful about expenses, and the aviation sector especially so. The SI was planning to leverage the Service Virtualization solution and reduce the costs associated with the Global Distribution Systems (GDS), and thus bring about a large amount of savings in the aviation sector. This would be addressing a new market in a radically different way. (GDS’s are the systems that manage and track inventory across the aviation and hospitality sector)

In the financial sector, addressing the customer across multiple channels becomes key, and there the SI’s help in the Digital Transformation by addressing the challenges that are thrown up due to integration issues, merging backend seamlessly and managing migrations through minimal downtimes. Here too the challenges of delivering software from development to production and doing it continually, with minimal errors becomes critical.

Increasingly, SI’s and SP’s are talking about delivering Digital Transformation and understand that DevOps is the way forward. It is for this reason that they have set up centres of excellence
(COE) and centres of competencies for solutions around DevOps. They realize this is the first step towards delivering new business and new models of ways of doing business across both legacy and new-age industries.

Setting up a COE enables SI’s to showcase an offering to their customers and highlight how they can deliver business changing transformation through access to mature service offerings and skilled personnel. All of this can be wrapped around by the best practices already present of service delivery and service models. Added to this would be the strong engagements with the customers already present, and this would contribute to delivering a Digital Transformation outcome.

As we can see, this ensures a bright new way forward for SI’s in the DevOps space with new business models and offerings that they can now take to the market.

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