For startups and small to medium-sized businesses (SMBs) working to expand their customer base, revenue, and standing in their industries, adopting a DevSecOps platform is one move that can help make all of that growth happen.
The trick is to migrate to a single, end-to-end platform when the organization is small, so bad habits are avoided early on and constructive processes can be built in and scale as the business grows. A DevSecOps platform enables small businesses to set up an environment and work processes that help them avoid common pitfalls that can come with growth.
How DevSecOps platforms help SMBs scale
Here are a few ways a DevSecOps platform can help smaller businesses and startups scale:
When someone is on a small IT team, the last thing they need is something complicating their job and taking up their precious time. And if they are stitching together multiple tools, they end up creating a clumsy, ad-hoc toolchain. That by its very nature forces DevOps professionals to wrestle with a chaotic environment that leads to bottlenecks and requires constant management, tweaking, updating, and switching between interfaces. All of that toolchain care and feeding comes at the expense of simply focusing on delivering code that drives the organization’s bottom line.
Maybe a company is small enough that silos aren’t a problem... right now. But as the business grows, silos likely will grow along with it, causing problems. Silos mean people are heads down working on their own project, or even worse, their own part of a project, without any visibility into the rest of it, or the ability to comment or share their work. It’s easy to create silos if you’re not using a DevSecOps platform because people often naturally separate off into single-minded groups that do not communicate with or understand each other. DevSecOps platforms foster collaboration, making it easier to keep silos from forming in the first place. They create a working environment open to communication and collaboration. A platform will give people the ability to work together, and that collective effort will produce better software.
Adopting a single, end-to-end platform when a company is small or when a startup is just getting off the ground will enable and encourage everyone in the business (from IT to finance, marketing, and sales) to work together. And it’s easier to create a collaborative culture from the very beginning, when working together can become a habit – a normal means of operation. Instilling an environment of communication also is less disruptive and easier to manage in a company of 10, 25, or even 100 employees than in a much larger and complex business. Collaboration also will encourage innovation by bringing in ideas from people in a range of demographics and business interests. Innovative ideas will help businesses grow into more successful and larger companies.
Decreasing hands-on work
Because startups and SMBs have fewer IT people, let alone teams of DevOps professionals, the automation that is an integral part of a DevSecOps platform eases their burden by decreasing the amount of hands-on work they have to do. With automation for jobs like backup, installation, and security testing built in, people spend less of their already-limited time needlessly repeating time-consuming tasks, or going back in the software lifecycle to find where a security bug was introduced. Automating tasks required for everything from design to build, test, and deployment also can reduce the potential for human error and provide consistency throughout the software lifecycle. By taking those jobs off DevSecOps teams' plates, they have more time to actually build and deploy innovative software and support the business.
Let’s be clear: A startup or SMB isn’t too small for a DevSecOps platform. If an organization is building software, it needs a platform. Business executives don’t want to struggle to grow and look back regretfully and think, “Why didn’t I adopt a DevSecOps platform earlier?”
“If you’re on a small team or even just a team of one, migrating could seem like a lot to take on,” says Fatima Sarah Khalid, a developer evangelist at GitLab. “But it’s worth the effort to set yourself up for growth. With a platform, everyone in the company is able to work in the same environment on the same projects. That means a collaborative environment without silos is formed early and the business can grow with that culture, instead of trying to adopt it years down the road when bad work habits have already formed.”
With GitLab’s single, end-to-end DevSecOps platform, automation is a system feature and not something that has to be added in. It also helps organizations eliminate or even keep silos from forming, increases collaboration and communication, and decreases the complexities that are born of DIY toolchains.
Download our ebook to learn about the benefits of migrating from a toolchain to GitLab’s DevSecOps platform.