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Platform Engineering: could it help my business?

The past decade has witnessed an increased empowerment of developers: from running what they build, to selecting their own microservices technology, through to self-serviced infrastructure requests. This DevOps-centric movement has brought with it lots of benefits to the software used daily, including more frequent releases and higher-quality apps. Yet, it has also created one interesting problem: duplicated efforts. 

Decentralized microservices teams often solve similar automation, security, and compute problems. It is common within a single organization to see multiple development teams building their own versions of SSL certificate generation, container image scanning, or cloud service configuration.

This inefficiency has pushed many organizations in the past few years to shift their focus to Platform Engineering: a productization of developer platforms offered as a self-service. 

It is not surprising then to see ‘Platform Engineering’ on Gartner’s top 10 strategic trends for 2023. Developers can now consume “platform as a service”. For example, App Director is a tool that accelerates the developer’s journey in building and shipping modern software on Kubernetes. Without prior knowledge, developers can deploy solutions to any cloud with best practices incorporated. The developer experience is significantly simplified enabling developers to focus on what they do best: quickly shipping high-quality software.

But at what size should an organization adopt “Platform Engineering”? And what if it has just started adopting DevOps?

First, let’s rethink the phrase ‘Platform Engineering’. It’s an ‘Internal Developer Platform’. It’s a platform that simplifies developers’ adoption of technology. Ideally, it’s not for a single team of developers. But the size of your dev org is not the only metric to use when assessing if a switch to this approach is worthwhile – Platform Engineering delivers broader business benefits even to small dev orgs. Listen to your developers! Are they duplicating efforts? Are they having to adopt and deeply learn a varied set of tools (Kubernetes, Helm, Terraform…etc.)? Could they benefit from abstraction? Could a set of self-service tools abstract these challenges and provide a ‘paved road’ or ‘Golden Path’?

Whether you need help in assessing or boosting your developer productivity, Bexprt can help – please get in touch!

We’re always happy to have an informal, exploratory conversation. 

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Image credit: Bethany Legg