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Required skills for DevOps engineers

How to become a DevOps engineer and the reason for its increased demand

Kennith Fletcher
devops
© Shutterstock / Eightshot_Studio

The implementation of DevOps tactics and culture isn’t slowing down anytime soon. How can you become a DevOps engineer? What does a DevOps engineer do? If you are an Ops person and would like to explore what DevOps is all about, here are some details on how to become a DevOps engineer, the required skills and the expected salary.

reBecoming a DevOps engineer

In today’s world, a DevOps engineer is a very valuable part of an organization. These engineers have years of experience and showcase the depth of knowledge in the field. If you would like to become a DevOps engineer without having to beat around the bush, take a look at the following article and decide for yourself. 

DevOps has revolutionized workplaces in many ways. The number of DevOps-related jobs are increasing, while its rank as an in-demand job goes up each year.

It is expected that in the future, DevOps will become mainstream and will significantly influence the software world as we know it.

What is DevOps?

DevOps is a concept consisting of a group of terms, which are not new but have joined to form a movement and is showing rapid growth in the technical community. Just like any other new popular term, many people are confused and received various contradicting impressions. It refers to the practice of operations and development engineering concurrently during the lifecycle, from the design through the process of development, to support the production. 

It involves the cooperation of professionals in Information Technology in the management of the environment of production and software deployment. The concept has strong attractions with Lean and Agile approaches. The idea is a combination of the highest level of practice continuously in order to formulate the best solution to real-life problems.

What a DevOps engineer does and why the job is in demand

DevOps engineers are expected to work with software developers, operators of systems, production staff, and IT to oversee the release of code. Engineers are expected to have both soft and hard skills to get rid of traditional barriers existing between software development, operation, and testing teams.

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They are also expected to flawlessly manage IT infrastructure which requires software support in all environments. Engineers must provide the resources needed and come up with the most effective model for deployment and the protocols for testing, validation, and release of the software. Other tasks include preparing testing data, result analysis, glitch troubleshooting, and communication issues back to development. They should have skills such as leadership, business, configuration, organization, automation, and operations. 

These jobs are in-demand because engineers are responsible for helping companies deliver essential services such as frequent security updates. Further, there is a significant shortage of the specific skills required for this particular position. With this increased combination and growth of technology in various sectors, there is also an increased demand for these engineers. 

Required skills

DevOps is aimed at altering and improving the relationships between IT operations and development to streamline the collaboration and communication between the two.

To achieve this, they must have the following skills:

Flexibility

Coding is an ongoing process that is always changing and requires various updates. DevOps engineers have to demonstrate dedication to development and integrate systems continuously into the code. This requires flexibility and adaptability to changes. The technical skills involved favor those who change dynamically and fast. Therefore, flexibility is an important requirement.

Security skills

A DevOps engineer is expected to uphold the security of the systems with the utmost care, especially in coding. Hackers use the easiest loopholes available to undermine the system in place and steal data. DevOps is expected to bring a fast cycle in code deployment, and hence vulnerabilities are likely to be introduced in the code faster.

Therefore, the engineer is expected to be able to write code that is secure and protects the system from unwanted attacks. They should have the best security skills to build software that is secure from the beginning of deployment. When recruiting a DevOps engineer, the organization must ensure that he/she has the best security skills.

Collaboration

DevOps concepts are built around the idea of collaboration. It brings together the development and operation of the software. They must have the ability to work in a team while providing collaboration across the entire process.

Scripting skills

This may sound very obvious to you; any competent developer should have excellent skills in scripting code. Be it JavaScript, Perl, Python, or Ruby, a skilled DevOps engineer should have programming capability. The perfect candidate is capable of writing code and replacing it in manual processes, including IP and DNS code assignment.

Decision-making

An indecisive candidate cannot fill the position. A sound DevOps engineer should have the ability to make decisions quickly and confidently in a very stressful environment. It requires the art of making quick decisions.

Infrastructure knowledge

A DevOps engineer should have infrastructure and cloud experience. They should have an understanding of cloud infrastructure and data center components. Without this ability, it is difficult to become a fully-fledged DevOps engineer. These skills are essential in the deployment of applications and designing software.

DevOps engineer salary

DevOps engineers reportedly earn an average salary of $105,000 in the United States.

Salaries are subject to vary based on the company and the region. The highest-paid employees are those working in Silicon Valley, where they earn a tune of $166,448. In Baltimore, Columbia, their adjusted salaries are $130,000.

Interview questions

Lately, DevOps engineers are seen to work in isolation and using their knowledge in coding and testing of new software. However, in real cases, they must focus on the delivery and configuration of jobs without extensively using their knowledge in the development of software.

SEE ALSO: Interview: A day in the life of a programmer

However, there has been a paradigm shift from the traditional approach due to advancements in technology and domain. Some of the questions to expect in an interview include:

  1. What knowledge do you have about DevOps?
  2. Why do you think DevOps has gained prominence over the past decade?
  3. Which popular DevOps tools do you know? Do you have any experience working with them?
  4. Define version control and the reason it should be used in VCS.
  5. What is the difference between DevOps and Agile? 
  6. Explain the importance of configuration management tools.
  7. What is Chef, and how is it used as a CM tool?
  8. Explain the concept of infrastructure in coding.
  9. Give the role of AWS in DevOps.
  10. Explain the best methods to help motivate developers follow the best practices.
Author

Kennith Fletcher

Kennith Fletcher was graduated with Distinction a Master of Science program in Cyber Security with Specialization in Ethical Hacking and Penetration Testing. Now he is working manager of Technology and Solutions at Essay 4 Students. He also responsible for providing guidance and awareness entire security portfolio in many top companies.


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