DevOps engineers have a diverse and unique skill set and the profile of the DevOps engineer is evolving. I asked Tomasz Ćwięk who is a DevOps Engineer at Grape Up to explain in more detail what it's like to be in that role.
1. What is the real impact that you have on the product, the processes and the team as a DevOps Engineer?
Since a DevOps Engineer is a person who operates in a wider IT area than a programmer or an operator, it is easier for him to see the “bigger picture”. Thanks to this, it is easier for him to predict the potential problems faster and determine in advance whether an idea is going in the right direction.
If a given solution requires a test or a proof of concept (PoC), a DevOps engineer is able to quickly and effectively run without involving more people. Then, using knowledge and appropriate tools, such as the CI/CD pipeline, monitoring, metrics, they can immediately draw conclusions, and save many hours or even days of work of the rest of the team.
2. Who can become a DevOps Engineer? Is there an ideal candidate profile?
Well, I used to work as a developer. Then one day, I felt that my work has slowly become “not-so-exciting” (not to call it boring) and monotonous. I felt the urge to change something back then. Now, the variety of tasks and problems that I encounter and have to deal with on a daily basis makes my day so much more exciting. Personally, I think that becoming a DevOps engineer is perfect for people who are good problem solvers. Additional experience as a system administrator and a programmer, is a nice to have.
3. What does a day in the life of a DevOps Engineer look like?
Currently, I work on several projects which differ from one another. Some of them are support projects, which is why it is very difficult to predict what the next day will look like. For example, one day we design the network infrastructure for new tools, the next day we debug the problem of updating the platform or installing a new tool. We wear many hats. Quite often we work as consultants, advising the client on how to best solve the problem, design a new solution or even reasonably plan tasks for the team.
When it comes to my daily tasks — there are plenty of them and all of them are different. The key to mastering this chaos is establishing a good relationship with the client, properly planned stand-up meetings, and effective use of tools.