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Building a DevOps Team: 10 Essential Skills to Look for When Hiring

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​We’ve seen big rises in the adoption of DevOps models across our client companies in recent times. In this blog, Oliver outlines what DevOps is and why it is so prevalent now, and some key ways to make sure your team is the best it can be.

What is DevOps

DevOps is about bringing together the cultural philosophy, business processes and tools in order to increase a company’s ability to evolve, improve and deliver applications and services at a faster pace than organisations that use more traditional software development and infrastructure processes, allowing you to gain a competitive advantage in serving your customers.

The DevOps model combines the development and operations teams, often merging the two into a single team where engineers and architects work across the entire application lifecycle, from development and test through deployment to operations and into support, developing a range of skills that not limited to a single function.

Building a team

Building a DevOps team requires a unique blend of technical expertise, flexibility, collaboration skills, and cultural fit. In today’s fast-paced and dynamic technology landscape, finding the right talent to support your DevOps operations can be challenging.

10 key skills needed to build your DevOps team

1. Automation

One of the core principles of DevOps is automation, which is the key to achieving rapid and frequent software delivery. Look for candidates with strong automation skills, including experience with tools such as Ansible, Puppet, and Chef. They should also have an understanding of continuous integration/continuous delivery (CI/CD) pipelines and be able to automate build, test, and deployment processes.

2. Cloud Computing

DevOps teams work extensively with cloud computing platforms, such as Amazon Web Services (AWS), Microsoft Azure, and Google Cloud Platform (GCP). Candidates with experience in deploying and managing applications on cloud-based platforms are highly desirable. They should have a good understanding of cloud services and technologies, such as virtualisation, containers, and serverless computing.

3. Infrastructure as Code (IaC)

Infrastructure as Code is an approach to infrastructure management that treats it as software code. DevOps engineers should be familiar with IaC tools like Terraform, CloudFormation, and Ansible. They should be able to write, test, and maintain infrastructure code as part of their regular work.

4. Security

Security is a critical aspect of any DevOps team. Candidates should have experience in implementing security best practices in DevOps processes, including threat modelling, vulnerability scanning, and secure configuration management. They should be familiar with security tools such as HashiCorp Vault, AWS Key Management Service (KMS), and certificate management tools.

5. Containerisation

Containerisation technology, such as Docker and Kubernetes, has revolutionised software development and deployment. Candidates should have a good understanding of containerisation concepts and tools, including container orchestration, deployment, and scaling.

6. Agile Methodologies

DevOps teams operate in an agile environment, working closely with development and operations teams to deliver software rapidly and efficiently. Candidates should have experience with agile methodologies such as Scrum, Kanban, and Lean, and be able to collaborate effectively with other teams.

7. Collaboration and Communication Skills

Collaboration and communication are critical to DevOps success. Candidates should be able to communicate effectively with technical and non-technical stakeholders, collaborate with cross-functional teams, and manage conflict effectively.

8. Monitoring and Logging

Monitoring and logging are essential components of a DevOps team’s operations. Candidates should be familiar with monitoring and logging tools such as Prometheus, Grafana, and ELK stack. They should be able to set up, configure, and maintain monitoring and logging systems and analyse logs for troubleshooting and optimisation.

9. Continuous Improvement

DevOps teams focus on continuous improvement and optimisation of their processes. Candidates should be able to identify areas for improvement, implement changes, and track progress over time. They should have a mindset of continuous learning and development.

10. Cultural Fit

DevOps teams thrive in a culture of collaboration, innovation, and accountability. Candidates should be able to align with the values and culture of the organisation, demonstrate a willingness to learn and grow, and contribute positively to the team’s dynamic.

Of course, it’s unlikely that you will find all of these skills in a single person, so mapping out the skills of your existing team members, identifying gaps in experience and knowledge and hiring strategically to fill these gaps whilst maintaining the core team culture of collaboration and continuous improvement will help to build a rounded team that can have the most significant positive impact for your business and your customers.

Need help with DevOps Recruitment?

Working in partnership with our global client base, which ranges from high-tech start-up businesses to globally recognised organisations, we provide clients with world-class DevOps recruitment services.

Whether you are looking to hire or be hired we offer DevOps recruitment for roles including: Cloud Engineers (AWS, Azure, GCP), System Administrators (Installing and configuring software, hardware, and networks Monitoring system performance and troubleshooting issues. Ensuring security and efficiency of IT infrastructure e.g., Linux ), Infrastructure Project Engineers (Windows, Linux, Mac) , Cloud Architects (AWS, Azure, GCP) and Automation Engineers (Blue Prism)

Interested in hearing more about our DevOps Recruitment Services? Click the button below or call us on 01384 446104 to talk further.

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