How to Unleash the Power of Developer-Led Innovation

 
 
By Darryl K. Taft  |  Posted 2014-06-26 Email Print this article Print
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

The cloud and other technologies are reducing CIOs' abilities to be the driving force for innovation in their businesses. Instead, developers are fast becoming the bedrock of IT innovation today, and their numbers are increasing. The developer population worldwide is expected to grow to 26.4 million by 2019 from 18.2 million today, according to Evans Data. Startup ideas that begin with developers launching a simple app go on to become the next billion-dollar acquisition or IPO.  Developers working in the enterprise are an internal innovation engine to their companies.  Although IT budgets remain relatively flat, line-of-business budgets are rising, and developers are being asked to quarterback key new projects. To fully unleash the power of developer-led innovation, a new set of developer-centric rules will help spur the best ideas and applications and make this a smooth transition for IT.  The "developerization" of IT is all about making developers' lives easier by giving them more freedom, flexibility and choice so they can focus on producing great apps, innovating and delivering valuable IP.  In this slide show, compiled with input from SendGrid CEO, Jim Franklin, eWEEK presents nine rules for the developerization of IT.

 
 
 
  • How to Unleash the Power of Developer-Led Innovation

    by Darryl K. Taft
    1 - How to Unleash the Power of Developer-Led Innovation
  • Arm Developers With the Efficiencies of the Public Cloud

    The public cloud offers developers access to scalable, flexible infrastructure so they can use only what they need and rapidly scale up as needed.  This helps shave precious time off project schedules, reduce time to market and cut costs. There's no need to reinvent the wheel by building servers, storage and services on your own. 
    2 - Arm Developers With the Efficiencies of the Public Cloud
  • Embrace the New Breed of Enterprise Developer Marketplaces

    Give developers access to more tools that are enterprise-ready.  An emerging set of marketplaces from Windows Azure, Heroku and Red Hat provide a variety of tools and services to help ramp up application development productivity.
    3 - Embrace the New Breed of Enterprise Developer Marketplaces
  • Remove Barriers of Long-Term Contracts

    The nature of application development can be very transitory at times.  Developers may need one service or tool one day and then pivot on to something else the next, and they like to try and test tools before they make a financial commitment.  Make the process of using different tools and vendors frictionless for them so they can self-select the tools they want.  Long-term contracts impede this since approvals are needed from procurement or legal, and this can draw out the process.
    4 - Remove Barriers of Long-Term Contracts
  • Recognize That Developers Speak Their Own Language

    If you want to effectively communicate with developers, either to attract talent, manage projects or target them for sales, you need to consider their points of view and the alternative channels of communication they're most comfortable with—whether these are user forums, hackathons or social media—and tailor your messages so they resonate with this highly technical audience.
    5 - Recognize That Developers Speak Their Own Language
  • Let Developers Experiment Freely, but Put Some Controls in Place

    Deploy API management solutions and monitoring tools so that IT can have a window into what traffic is flowing through the network so that IT can ensure security measures are taken into account.
    6 - Let Developers Experiment Freely, but Put Some Controls in Place
  • Build Apps That Are Platform-Agnostic

    Rather than building for the Web and then adding a mobile extension later, developers should keep this in mind at the start of the app development process. If an application has a physical aspect to it, developers should be encouraged to define, deploy, communicate and manage the Internet of things (IoT) application in a scalable fashion from the start.
    7 - Build Apps That Are Platform-Agnostic
  • Provide Devs With Collaborative, Creative Outlets

    Understand that developers have a thirst for knowledge and an inherent desire to share new tools, hacks, shortcuts and passion projects with their peers. Give them time and space to do this at work either through internal hackathons, brown-bag lunches or some other method, and that'll make for a much happier bunch.  Plus, some of these ideas may end up in your products. Gmail, AdSense and Google Talk (now Hangouts), for example, all started as side projects of Google employees.
    8 - Provide Devs With Collaborative, Creative Outlets
  • Set Standards for Coding in RESTful, Modern APIs

    Issuing a set of best practices related to usable standards like REST will allow developers to more rapidly build applications that access and act upon data exposed via APIs, even in environments with unreliable network speeds and limited computing power. REST also makes it easy for humans to understand what's being exchanged while allowing computers to talk to one another efficiently.
    9 - Set Standards for Coding in RESTful, Modern APIs
  • Embrace the Hacker/Maker Culture

    The hackers of today are technical tinkerers who use unorthodox means to build creative solutions. This is a societal movement that IT pros should recognize and leverage to their and everyone's advantage. Whether it's through learning to code, hacking hardware, or simply involving developers in the problem-solving and decision-making processes, this effort can lead to more innovative, fun and unique solutions; greater productivity; and stronger interpersonal relationships throughout the organization as a result of collaboration.
    10 - Embrace the Hacker/Maker Culture
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Submit a Comment

Loading Comments...
 
Manage your Newsletters: Login   Register My Newsletters























 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Rocket Fuel