Blockchain DevOps: Is Blockchain a Threat to DevOps? Can They Work Together?

Blockchain along with DevOps play a key role in Fintech and other real-world applications. In this article we uncover all main nuances about these two technologies and whether they can be integrated together.

Fintech is a buzz word in the finance industry, and many corporate giants are talking about it. It is an abbreviation for Financial Technology, and it refers to the continuous interactions between financial services and technology. Initially, Fintech used to describe the existing trade and consumer financial institutions and relationships between them. However, it now describes the technologies that are currently disrupting asset management, mobile payments, fundraising, loans, and money transfers. One of the technologies that have disrupted traditional financial technologies is Blockchain. It has played a vital role in the financial services and could be the backbone supporting the current fintech revolution. 

Meanwhile, DevOps is also another buzzword in Fintech. It has been developing rapidly over the past few years. However, may Blockchain work together with DevOps? Industry specialists without IT background are usually confused by these two technologies. It is essential to understand DevOps methodology and how it affects the financial world. 

What is Blockchain?

When Bitcoin hit the ground running, businesses and developers alike were curious about the technology supporting the new digital currency. The blockchain concept was developed more than a decade ago. Blockchain is a process and system of recording financial transactions in a manner that makes it challenging or impossible to cheat, hack, or change the system. It is simply a digital ledger of recorded, duplicated transactions and then distributed among a network of computer systems. Every block in the chain records a number of transactions, and whenever a new transaction occurs, it is recorded in the participant’s ledger.

Image 1 showing the properties of distributed ledger technology (DLT)

The decentralised database is managed by several participants and is called Distributed Ledger Technology (DLT). Notably, Blockchain is a form of DLT where transactions are recorded and stored using an immutable cryptographic signature known as a hash. When anyone changes a block in the chain, it would be recognised that someone attempted to tamper with the system. If hackers want to corrupt the blockchain system, they would have to access and change all blocks in the chain. Due to the secure nature of Blockchain, it has several use cases.

Blockchain Use Cases

Blockchain applications exceed bitcoin and cryptocurrency applications popularity. Due to its ability to create more fairness and transparency, it saves businesses a lot of money and time, providing an additional level of security. Its applications affect a variety of sectors, and it ranges from how contracts are implemented to assisting governments to work more effectively. Some of the use cases for blockchains include such :

  1. The real estate processing platform
  2. Sharing medical data
  3. Cryptocurrency exchange
  4. Tracking of music royalties
  5. Creating original content
  6. Cross-border payments
  7. Advertising insights
  8. Real-time IoT operating systems
  9. Voting mechanisms
  10. Personal identity security
  11. Monitoring supply chain and logistics
  12. Anti-money laundering tracking systems

What Are the Top Advantages of Blockchain for Businesses?

  1. It is a fairly new technology that has allowed the conversion and storage of data through the internet in more secure ways.
  2. It stores current and past data together while empowering you to view data, control information, and transactions. 
  3. The transfer and application processes are more transparent, even though it is decentralised.
  4. The transactions are immutable, which means that it cannot be easily altered after data is recorded.
  5. It has fostered faster transactions because it eliminates the need for third parties in most situations.
  6. No central authority manages the system, and the entire process and transactions are decentralised.
  7. It uses infrastructure that has a variety of security and authentication with security.

What is DevOps?

DevOps refers to a combination of tools, practices, and cultural philosophies that improve an organisation’s ability to deliver services and applications at high speed. Also, it involves improving and evolving products at a faster rate in comparison to organisations that use traditional infrastructure and software development. The higher speed of production allows organisations to improve their service delivery while competing favourably in the industry. One of the best examples of the importance of DevOps is Netflix.

Notably, DevOps emerged from the union of two essentially related fields. The first field is called agile operations or agile infrastructure, and the term sprang up from applying Lean and Agile approaches to operations work. The second field focused on the union between development and operations.

According to DevOps, the two functions, development and operations, are not separate roles. They are merged into one single function where engineers work in the entire application process, which begins from development to testing to launching and operations. DevOps engineers have to acquire a range of skills, which are not limited to one single role or function. 

In some models, security and quality assurance teams are closely integrated with the development and operations team throughout the entire application lifecycle. DevOps’ benefits include speed, security, improved collaboration, reliability, scalability, and rapid delivery. Due to its reliability, DevOps has all-applicable use cases.

DevOps Use Cases

DevOps’ uses and applications have transformed the software development process. It has allowed DevOps engineers to solve several real-world processes. Some of the applications include the use of DevOps in:

  1. Automation testing integration
  2. Online financial trading companies
  3. Car manufacturing companies
  4. Early defects detection
  5. Airline industries
  6. Software development
  7. Bug reduction
  8. Reducing operation time and computation cost
  9. Reducing integration time and many others

What Are the Benefits of DevOps?

DevOps has obvious advantages as compared to other more outdated  

  1. Eliminates most of the manual processes necessary in implementing new features.
  2. Utilises the norm of continuous delivery.
  3. Has fast problem-solving abilities.
  4. It has a stable operating environment that reduces the likelihood of potential issues or problems.
  5. Has several benefits for organisations and it gives them adequate time for innovation. 
  6. It is applicable to most industries, and it can transform essential processes.
  7. Implementing DevOps can boost team morale in some organisations.
  8. Has improved customer satisfaction in most cases.

Is Blockchain a Threat to DevOps?

There are concerns that the continuous growth of Blockchain technology threatens the role of DevOps’ engineers. In traditional web applications, most of the functionality and value was placed in the application itself more than the protocols that run the application. On the other hand, Blockchain-based applications emphasize the role of protocols at the expense of the applications. Ultimately, it has made apps to appear relatively “unimportant.” 

If Blockchain becomes more essential to software platforms in the future as its proponents believe, application code could become less essential in the future than it is today. It means that professionals who write and manage the application codes could have a limited role in software development. It could threaten the role of DevOps engineers.

Can Blockchain and DevOps Work Together?

Blockchain is one of the technologies which are disrupting the industry. On the other hand, DevOps is growing rapidly and gaining acceptance across the board. Note that the two processes or products already offer several advantages alone. Can you take a second and imagine what the world would achieve with a combination of Blockchain and DevOps?

It means that Blockchain DevOps would provide strategic and planned advantages. Software delivery chains would become more reliable and transparent through Blockchain technology. Data used in DevOps would be recorded in Blockchain through a decentralised manner. Ultimately, it would make both technologies more transparent and easier while improving the overall quality. 

Blockchain is believed to transform how business transactions are implemented with the promise of smart contracts, security, shared account ledgers, immutability, and distributed consensus. DevOps could greatly improve the value for organisations which are under constant pressure to be more innovation-focused and customer-centric. DevOps provides the consistency, efficiency, and quality that traditional organisations need to embrace while implementing Blockchain technology. 

There are some core principles of DevOps that could be essential in implementing blockchain technology. DevOps focuses on breaking down silos within an organisation and allowing individuals or teams to take responsibility for the entire project instead of dividing the tasks by role. To implement Blockchain successfully, an organisation needs a team of Blockchain DevOps engineers and other professionals who can work together to solve issues. Integrating Blockchain development and DevOps could help boost the software development life cycle.

Why Do Many Believe Blockchain and DevOps Will Scale Higher into a Brighter Future?

Even though it is not possible to precisely define how DevOps and Blockchain will influence each other in the next 15 years to come, they will continue to have a strong influence on one another for at least in the foreseeable future. Many thought leaders believe that every Fortune 500 company will soon be using Blockchain, including smart contracts for transaction authentication and processing. 

However, the increased scale and speed of adopting Blockchain are influenced by developers. A Blockchain DevOps engineer holds a unique position in determining the value of Blockchain and develops implementation. Conversely, the value depends on how the Blockchain fits into the existing business relationships, systems of governance, and legacy transaction networks used by the adopting company. 

Moreover, DevOps for blockchain smart contracts will only increase if businesses realize the potential of technology beyond cryptocurrency, including its power to disrupt and improve enterprise structures. The impact of the Blockchain and DevOps on businesses do not require a thorough overhaul of existing systems.

How is Regulation Propelling Trust in the Blockchain DevOps Rising Evolution?

As the digital era continues to overturn the value propositions of business models across the world, business organizations are expected to stay one step ahead in unrelenting technology progress, and this where regulation of Blockchain and DevOps comes in.  Business organizations need a trusted technology of blockchain and DevOps in order to remain relevant in the market. 

Many companies also depend on enterprise IT to run their business better and they can only do so with a regulated and trusted blockchainDevOps, which is on the rise. Different IT enterprises across the world are embracing DevOps with blockchain to accelerate and automate their application delivery and business support.  The demand for blockchain and DevOps in a regulated industry is expected to accelerate the growth of the market platform by 22.5%, which is approximated to be $19.9 billion by 2024. 

Key Takeaways

Blockchain and DevOps are vital for financial technology. Blockchain focuses on shifting from centralised and internal systems to data-centric and decentralised systems. It means that each member of the peer-to-peer ledger should be dependent on each other. In addition, all the processes should be effectively integrated with the environment while delivering high-quality software. However, if one member cannot deliver high-quality software, it could compromise confidence in the system. Nevertheless, integrating blockchain technology with DevOps could prevent such problems. Blockchain DevOps integration could take security, smart contracts, efficiency, and cost reduction to the next level.

Adam Hansen

Adam is a part time journalist, entrepreneur, investor and father.