Cisco: Developers spend majority of time firefighting

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A new survey from Cisco reveals that software developers are spending more than 57% of their time in “war room” meetings to resolve application performance issues, rather than focusing on building new software to drive innovation. 

The findings highlight the immense pressure facing developers today. Globally, 85% of those surveyed report increased demands to accelerate software release velocity, while 77% cite mounting pressure to deliver seamless and secure digital experiences.

However, developers find themselves constantly pulled away from creating new code to assist IT operations teams in managing ongoing application availability and performance problems. This results in developers spending hours debugging applications instead of innovating.

The core issue, according to the survey, is that organisations lack the proper tools and visibility to understand the root causes of application issues. Without a unified view across applications and the supporting IT infrastructure, three-quarters (75%) of developers fear their company is at increased risk of critical application downtime and disruptions.

The situation is taking a major toll on developer morale and retention. 82% feel frustrated and demotivated, while 54% are increasingly inclined to leave their current job due to the lack of effective monitoring solutions.

“Organisations cannot afford an exodus of talent simply because their IT teams don’t have the tools needed to do their jobs,” said Shannon McFarland, Vice President at Cisco DevNet. “When things go wrong, it’s incredibly difficult to quickly identify root causes, often resulting in panic situations where developers must spend hours assisting IT ops.”

What’s the solution?

The survey reveals that 91% of developers believe they should play a bigger role in selecting monitoring solutions for their organisation. Above all, they point to full-stack observability as a potential game-changer.

Full-stack observability provides unified visibility into applications and infrastructure across cloud and on-premises environments. While not the primary users, 78% of developers say implementing full-stack observability would be beneficial.

76% stated it’s becoming impossible to do their job because IT operations lack the needed insights to effectively manage performance. 94% said full-stack observability is the key to escaping war rooms and refocusing on innovation.

In addition to observability, 39% of developers believe their organisation would benefit from deploying AI to automate issue detection and real-time resolution.  

Moreover, 57% see a need for greater ongoing collaboration between developers and IT teams, continuing the shift toward DevOps practices that embed performance and security into the development lifecycle.

“At a time when developer talent is in such high demand, organisations must empower their teams with the tools they need to perform to their full potential,” added McFarland. “Full-stack observability has become mission-critical to delivering the digital experiences consumers now demand.”

(Photo by Brian Wangenheim)

See also: Stack Overflow and OpenAI partner to empower developers

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