DevOps vs Agile : Understanding the Key Difference


DevOps is booming in the software development industry for some time now. DevOps and Agile are two software development methodologies that help developers offer an end-product quickly and efficiently. But in spite of its increasing popularity in the market, there is often some confusion between the two. Many organizations are planning to deploy these methods. But the question arises – what does each methodology encompass?

Another question we face is – can any organization work on both methodologies together? Should you choose one over the other? Well, the comparison between DevOps vs Agile is a never-ending debate. So, if you want to understand the basic information along with the comparison, you have landed on the right page.

Here, in this blog, we are going to cover the difference between DevOps and Agile. But, before moving further, let us walk through the basic information.

What’s DevOps?

Development and Operations – that’s what makes a DevOps. As the name suggests, DevOps aims to bring the software developers and information technology operatives together to deploy the software in a quick, automated, and repeatable way. It allows a developer’s team to operate all the software development lifecycle activities – from development to testing, deployment, and operations.

DevOps ties the team of software developers, QA engineers, and system administrators together. Also, it allows companies to fulfill their customer’s desires in a better manner. However, it also represents the method of development and IT operations with effective collaboration and communication.

However, different types of DevOps tools are required at every stage of the software development process. Therefore, DevOps has become the most valuable operation in any organization to get the best quality and speed for application delivery.

DevOps has brought changes in the IT industry. It aims to deliver a rapid software development service by adopting agile practices in a system-oriented approach.

Principles of DevOps

Because of many advantages, many companies are transitioning to DevOps. But, well, we cannot understand the new culture without understanding its fundamental values.

Here are the following principles that steer the engineering process.

Version Control

In this model, all the code gets verified before submitting to the repository by the developers. Therefore, other developers can also track and analyze changes for better collaboration.

Continuous Integration

Daily, every developer integrates their code in a shared repository. They bifurcate the work into small parts. It helps them to manage the small code, identify bugs, and detect potential merge conflicts.

Read More: Why and How of DevOps Integration in Software Development

Continuous Delivery

Since the code is constantly integrated, it’s consistently delivered to the customer. Furthermore, through the smaller contribution, you can release the software update promptly. This gives better customer satisfaction.

Continuous Deployment

DevOps automates the process for speedy development. In addition, the continuous deployment will automate the release of minor updates that don’t represent a substantial threat to the present architecture.


Continuous Testing

DevOps focuses on continuous testing in every step of development. As a result, you will have valuable feedback with automated testing.

Continuous Operations

DevOps developers are always working hard for better modification and updation of software with a new release. Therefore, you have to analyze and monitor DevOps for better performance. Its primary goal is to prevent downtime and issues during code release.


DevOps is famous for its foster collaboration and feedback sharing. Therefore, Development and Operations need to communicate and share feedback to streamline the efficiency of DevOps.

Impact of DevOps

DevOps has been a revolutionary philosophy to apply in software development. Many big giants like Amazon, Walmart, Netflix, Adobe, and Sony Pictures are leveraging DevOps methodology for many years to automate all of their processes. In addition, it increases the collaboration between the developers and other teams.

Even small startups like Ola, Groffers, and Flipkart are implementing DevOps into their whole lifecycle to improve the quality of their products. Once you implement the DevOps method in your organization, the whole quality of the product increases, and cost-efficiency also increases.

According to a survey among 700 IT professionals, 43% of respondents said that DevOps has boosted innovation in their work. Click To Tweet

What’s Agile?

Agile methodology focuses on the constant iteration of testing and development in the software development process. Moreover, its main goal is to have a collaborative approach and rapid release of software development.

Having said this earlier, unlike the waterfall model, development and testing iteration happen. However, its main focus is to have an evolutionary, iterative, and incremental development process.

The agile model was born in place of an alternative to the traditional waterfall methodology. In this model, the products are divided into smaller pieces. Then, they get integrated for final testing. However, we can implement it differently, such as Kanban, XP, Scrum, etc.

The Agile method focuses on the following core values to manage an Agile software development project:

Individual and team interactions over the process and tools

The core value of the agile method focuses on the importance of valuing everyone in the team and stimulating the work environment. Also, it encourages continuous communication between team members, so everyone remains on the same page of the development process to maximize efficiency.

Working software over comprehensive documentation

Documentation can’t take at the time of software delivery. However, gone are the days when the detailed documentation of the requirements and desired end-product was given at the beginning of software development. Now, agile has eliminated the time of document creation. Thus, it makes an agile method much smoother and easier.


Responding to change over following a plan

Agile has led the mid-product to adapt to the changes for overall success. Well, embracing new features by adapting to changes is the prominent difference between agile and waterfall.

Customer collaboration over contract negotiation

A continuous software development process leads to a collaborative approach with the consumer regularly. Getting immediate feedback from them will give you an idea and the best results for your product. Through this value, we can avoid contract negotiation with the customer before the development takes place.

Impact of Agile

The impact of Agile methodology leads to deliver a quality of the product. In addition, it encourages developers with the right approach, thus enabling them to commit their efforts to the right project objectives.

Many large companies like British Telecoms, National Bank of Canada, CISCO, and LEGO have seen a wave of increases in their profits and efficiency after implementing Agile methodology.

Difference Between DevOps and Agile


The Merging of DevOps and Agile

In the last decade, many organizations have begun merging Agile and DevOps to get a higher user satisfaction rate, enhance delivery, and effective collaboration within a team.

You need to change your existing strategies and attitudes to combine DevOps and agile practices.

Proper Understanding

The team members have to understand each other’s tasks while implementing the agile methodology. However, Scrum Masters, Project Managers, and Product Owners must have a better mutual understanding. Therefore, they have to know every required development step to manage a project.

Effective Collaboration

Since every team member is involved with the operations team, they all have to understand every development process and operations phase.

DevOps Practices in Sprints

Now, the team needs to integrate DevOps while practicing sprints. That allows the whole DevOps team to be involved in planning, retrospections, and daily meetings.

Automate Workflow

An integral part of DevOps development – automation should be part of an agile workflow and project planning. Artificial Intelligence – AIOps is used to automate manual workflows.

Measure Success

It assesses and measures the KPIs and key DevOps metrics within end-to-end development.


How Does Agile Method Differ from DevOps?

In many ways, DevOps stands out as a matured development approach. Both methodologies define the reaction to the separated-out waterfall style of development. The idea of “shifting left” refers to both disciplines, in which practices associated with later parts of a waterfall process are considered at the previous stage in an agile or DevOps process.

Besides, DevOps moves faster and has a different audience. As a result, you will find a significant difference in scale, audience, and how teams are structured. Generally, the Agile method is used for problem-solving within smaller teams. On the other hand, DevOps works throughout departments to solve bigger goals and objectives promptly.

In a nutshell, DevOps collaborates with two large teams to work together for quick software deployment. At the same time, Agile focuses on getting smaller teams to have an effective collaboration for ever-changing customer needs.

For example, DevOps focuses on process automation using infrastructure as a code tool. On the other hand, agile relies on a collaborative approach to solve problems.

Culture of DevOps and Agile

Both DevOps and Agile have profound cultural approaches within an organization, while Agile doesn’t necessarily lead to DevOps.

An Agile methodology focuses on changes in the software development process. It promotes small, manageable changes quickly that lead to large change. Many organizations have implemented the workflow of Agile methodology to boost many departments. Therefore, many enterprises consider themselves fully Agile today!

On the other hand, DevOps can also bring its cultural value within an organization, including effective communication and balancing stability with modification and flexibility.

Many experts believe that choosing both Agile and DevOps methodologies can lead to more rational decision-making. This leads to enhancing the company culture.

Did you know by the year 2022, 75% of DevOps initiatives will fail to meet expectations due to organizational change and learning issues? Click To Tweet

Can DevOps Replace Agile?

As we know, both methodologies can increase the software quality and speed up its delivery. However, the old-school waterfall model was replaced by the Agile model. But yet to be found a replacement for DevOps.

DevOps exists because of agile. Therefore, your organization can choose and practice both methodologies.

DevOps is Agile Applied Beyond the Software Team or Collaboration

The agile method reveals – “Agile is always ready to adapt to new changes, even late in the development process. Agile processes harness change for the competitive gain of consumers.”

A constant delivery mainly maps to the agile approach. Therefore, its primary goal is to stand up to customers’ expectations through early and continuous delivery of the valuable product.

Agile methodology is all about embracing changes than standups and sprint planning. However, there are more principles in the Agile Manifest. So, rather than choosing among the core values or principles, you should consider it a whole object. This whole methodology defines the approach and attitude towards change similar to DevOps and Agile methods.

Looking for an experienced partner who will help you in choosing between Agile and DevOps?

How Can Organization Implement an Agile Method to DevOps?

Finally, Agile and DevOps can work seamlessly together. But you must have a better understanding of the relationship between speed and quality. And this may vary as per every organization.

You should know what problems will be solved by implementing a particular method and then tailor your efforts to that problems. Otherwise, you will fail at every step of the software development. Hence, before making a final decision, partner with a highly efficient partner offering DevOps Consulting Services and analyze the major difference between Agile and DevOps.

Working with an experienced software development company – Radixweb can help get you there! Of course, only your organization will fill the gap between your DevOps-friendly culture and agile teams. But having a helping hand to do the cultural work can maximize your technical capabilities

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Pratik Mistry is a rare mix of technologist and vice president of sales at Radixweb. His passion lies is in helping companies to grow revenues by delivering top notch software development services and build value-based partnerships. When not driving high-impact go to market strategies, Pratik loves to try new cuisines and going to the movies.