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DevOps vs Agile: Understand the Key Differences and Similarities

Last updated on Apr 26,2024 38.7K Views

Vardhan is a technology enthusiast working as a Sr. Research Analyst at... Vardhan is a technology enthusiast working as a Sr. Research Analyst at Edureka. He has expertise in domains like Big data, Cloud computing and...
7 / 13 Blog from Introduction To DevOps

DevOps, is a buzzword which has been trending in the industry for quite sometime now. But in-spite of it’s popularity, there is a lot of confusion pertaining to how different it is from Agile. What’s worse? The DevOps vs Agile, is a never ending debate in the IT industry. 

If you want to understand how different they are, and which of them is better than the other, then stick around till the end of this ‘DevOps vs Agile’ blog where I will be uncovering a number of industry secrets. But, a synopsis of the differences between them is in the table below.

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AgilityAgility in both Development & OperationsAgility in only Development
Processes/ PracticesInvolves processes such as CI, CD, CT, etc.Involves practices such as Agile Scrum, Agile Kanban, etc.
Key Focus AreaTimeliness & quality have equal priorityTimeliness is the main priority
Release Cycles/ Development SprintsSmaller release cycles with immediate feedbackSmaller release cycles
Source of FeedbackFeedback is from self (Monitoring tools)Feedback is from customers
 Scope of WorkAgility & need for AutomationAgility only

DevOps vs Agile

Agile’s founding principle is bringing Agility to Development. But, DevOps’ founding principle is bringing Agility to both Development and Operations. Before I talk about the technical differences between DevOps and Agile, I want to set the context straight. Hence, I will be talking about a few non-technical differences which you should be aware of.  

The important point to note is that DevOps is not a replacement for Agile! Sounds wrong? No, Agile is not dying. But, is DevOps better? Yes, it is an improvement.

While Agile was a natural replacement for the Waterfall model and other Scrum practices, DevOps is not a replacement. But, it is a direct successor to Agile.

Similar to how time, practices get better; over time, Agile has also grown its challenges, and DevOps has turned out to be the more optimized practice.

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Why Is DevOps Better Than Agile?

Let’s understand this by first learning what were the challenges with Agile software development.

Agile software development is about following a set of best practices for creating quality software in a timely manner. But the problem is, the best practices followed, involve people working in Silos

By Silos, I mean there are people who will be working as Developers, as Testers, or as ITOps with very little communication between them. And since, there is very little communication between them, they are not aware of what the others are working on despite being a part of the same process.

This Silos-ed working of teams is the reason for the infamous “Blame Game” that goes about when the software fails or has major flaws. 

The Blame Game

When a client has complained about software, the blame is internally thrown at each other. The ‘Dev’ team would point fingers at the ‘QA’ team. ‘QA’ team will then point fingers at the ‘ITOps’ team, who would redirect the blame to the ‘Dev’ team.

blame game - devops vs agile - edureka

Irrespective of the problem residing in the code developed, or on the systems where the code is deployed, the problem remains in isolation, as nobody wants to take ownership for the screw-up.

Solution To This Everlasting Problem?

DevOps! You could have guessed this. But, can you guess how DevOps overcomes the Silos?

Simple- DevOps breaks the Silos right through the middle. In DevOps, the ‘Dev’ team, the ‘ITOps’ team and ‘QA’ team are not independently working pieces of the gamut. But, they are ‘one’.

DevOps practice uses a DevOps Engineer – who does everything:- developing the code, testing that code, and deploying the very same code to production. So, does the unification solve the problem?

Yes, it solves one major aspect of the problem. Since the same DevOps Engineer is multi-skilled, he will be given ownership of the entire process: developing the code, unit testing/ functional testing the code, and deploying that code to the staging/ testing/ production server.

Since he is the sole owner, there are very few problems that will arise. And even if problems do arise, the person who knows the product best will be on the job.

Speaking of the best person, another issue that DevOps solves is the dependency problem. So, even if the ‘ITOps’ guy is not available, there won’t be any delay. Because as DevOps Engineers, the role of ‘ITOps’ can be easily assumed by anybody else.

Is DevOps Performed By Only DevOps Engineers?

Well, that’s the catch. It always seems like DevOps Engineers are the only folks involved. But, in the real world, DevOps Engineers are restricted to only performing a specified role even though they are capable of being involved throughout the entire lifecycle.

If you want to read about the various DevOps Roles in an organization, click here.

Technical Differences Between DevOps and Agile

Process Or Practices?

Agile development involves a set of practices such as: Agile Scrum & Agile Kanban

DevOps involves a set of technical processes such as: Continuous Development, Continuous Integration (CI), Continuous Testing (CI), Continuous Deployment (CD) and Continuous Monitoring.  

Key Focus Area?

Agile development focuses mainly on releasing quality software in a timely manner.

DevOps goes one step further. It focuses on guaranteeing quality software in a timely manner. Quality is guaranteed by Continuously Monitoring the software application after its deployment.

Release Cycles/ Development Sprints

Agile focuses on smaller release cycles with incremental software delivery.

DevOps focuses on smaller release cycles with incremental delivery & immediate feedback.

Who Gives Feedback?

In Agile, feedback is mostly given by customers.

In DevOps, feedback is mostly measured by the internal team (by using Continuous Monitoring tools).

Scope Of Work

Agile mainly focuses on working with Speed or Agility.

DevOps mainly focuses on achieving automation by orchestrating various DevOp tools. 

Now that brings an end to this Agile vs DevOps blog. Stay tuned to Edureka for more interesting blogs on DevOps. For a better understanding of the differences between DevOps and Agile, you can refer to the below video.

DevOps vs Agile | DevOps Tutorial For Beginners | DevOps Training | Edureka


For structured training on DevOps, check out DevOps Training Course by Edureka, a trusted online learning company with a network of more than 250,000 satisfied learners spread across the globe. 

The Edureka DevOps Engineer Course helps learners gain expertise in various DevOps processes and tools such as Git, Jenkins, Docker, Puppet, Ansible, and Nagios, for automating multiple steps in SDLC.

Got a question for us? Please mention it in the comments section, and we will get back to you.

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DevOps vs Agile: Understand the Key Differences and Similarities