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January 18, 2018

7 Skills Every DevOps Engineer Must Have

Looking to recruit a new DevOps engineer? Here's a list of everything you should look for when hiring.

By April Slattery

The aim of using DevOps is to alter and improve the relationship between development and IT operations, advocating better communication and collaboration between the two units. Although it may seem somewhat simple, there is much more needed from a DevOps engineer to successfully deploy the code and bind the two units together successfully.

From the basics of day to day skills needed to cope with the pressures of DevOps, comes technical skills each and every engineer must qualify in. Apart from having a burning passion for scripting and coding, DevOps engineers must be open-minded and collaborative to carry out the process successfully.

CBR has devised a list of all the qualities that should be in the job description next time your company is hiring a DevOps engineer.


1. Flexibility

Coding is an on-going process, ever changing and always needing updating. To be a successful and effective DevOps engineer the ideal candidate must have the ability to continuously develop and integrate new systems and operations into the code. A DevOps engineer must have flexible working skills and adapt to the changing code.

Engineers must be comfortable moving from one area of software construction to another, be it integration, testing, releasing or deployment.

Continuous Integration, for example, requires the technical skills to manage change quickly and efficiently, as well as being able to work collaboratively in a team to guarantee everyone is working towards the same goal.

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2. Security SkillsIBM tackles global cybersecurity talent shortage with 'New Collar' jobs initiative

As with many other skilled areas security is always of the utmost importance, especially in coding. An easy way for hackers to get into systems is through vulnerabilities, undermining the system that is in place to get to the data.

DevOps brings a faster cycle of development and deployment of code, which means that vulnerabilities are at higher risk of being introduced to the code much quicker than they have ever been able to before. Therefore, engineers must have the skills to write secure code to protect applications from unwanted attacks, in addition to ensuring systems have defence mechanisms in place against common cybersecurity vulnerabilities.

A DevOps engineer must have security skills when being employed because it is paramount to build-in secure software from the start of deployment, as opposed to adding it in later. If security is not in place from the outset then here is more chance that hackers could write in damaging code to the network. Therefore, when recruiting for the next DevOps engineer ensure security is on the top of the list of skills.


3. Collaboration

When it comes to a successful DevOps engineer, the ability to perform as a one-man band will not pass muster – collaboration is in fact central to the DevOps concept, bringing together software development and software operation. A DevOps engineer must have the ability to work in a team, with collaboration providing more cross-functionality within the DevOps process.


4. Scripting Skills

Though it may sound obvious, any developer must have high-quality skills in scripting code. Whether its JavaScript, Python, Perl, or Ruby, a successful DevOps engineer must be able to write code.

From writing manual code to replacing manual processes such as assigning IP addresses or DNS codes, there must be someone with the ability to write them and that’s what the perfect candidate should be able to do.

7 Skills Every DevOps Engineer Must Have - CBR

5. Decision-making

An indecisive candidate is not one that you want for your business DevOps engineer. The successful candidate will have the ability to confidently and quickly make a decision is the hustle-bustle environment a DevOps engineer works in.

The ever-changing nature of code brings the necessity to quickly make the decision on how to fix any incoherent elements of the code. Decisiveness must be an element to consider when employing a DevOps engineer, because making quick decisions allows engineers to maintain the ability of rapid development and deployment of new coding changes.


6. Infrastructure Knowledge

Scripting is just one of the key skills a developer should have, just ahead of cloud and infrastructure experience. Engineers should have a working understanding of data centre-based and cloud infrastructure components. This includes elements such as how software is networked to running virtual networks.

Without the ability to understand infrastructure it could prove somewhat difficult to be the full package DevOps engineer. Incorporating infrastructure skills will enable an effective DevOps engineer to design and deploy applications effectively using the best of the best platforms.


7. Soft Skills

As mentioned above being a DevOps engineer is no one-man job, so in that case, any future employee must have soft skills as well as technical. Bound on trust, DevOps culture enables all workers to be communicative and understanding to the process and if changes need to be made.

When developers communicate with each other effectively, applications can be delivered in a much shorter period of time than if some workers were absent to information. As well as quicker market deployment, having good communication will lead to fewer errors and therefore lower costs and improve the quality of code.


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