What Does a DevOps Engineer Do and How To Become One

By Indeed Editorial Team

Published 13 September 2021

The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.

If you are curious about working in engineering and software development, then an occupation as a DevOps engineer might be the proper career for you. These professionals work closely with software development to promote efficient processes and increase revenue. Learning about the duties of this field can help you determine if it aligns with your career goals. In this article, we discuss what does a DevOps engineer does, review how to become one in five steps and explore several frequently asked questions about the occupation.

Related: Which Is the Best Branch in Engineering?

What does a DevOps engineer do?

The answer to "what does a DevOps engineer do?" is that they facilitate communication between the developmental and operational sides in software development. A DevOps engineer makes it easier for the two sides to share feedback to make a more streamlined process, which decreases development time. Responsibilities a DevOps engineer might have include:

  • possessing a thorough understanding of the goals and responsibilities for both the development and operational teams

  • assisting in the planning and development of new coding to implement new systems

  • overseeing the release of new features from development to employees to ensure software is reliable when cleared for use

  • monitoring the security of new builds to assess any potential spaces that could lead to security threats

  • collaborating with colleagues to create, develop and execute software initiatives and projects

  • implementing software upgrades and fixes to ensure development software programs remain consistently and frequently up to date

  • developing strategies and alternate processes to improve workflow and improve the efficiency and success of employees, teams and departments.

How to become a DevOps engineer in 5 steps

Here are five steps to help you become a DevOps engineer:

1. Earn a degree

The first step toward a career as a DevOps engineer is completing an undergraduate degree in computer science, computer programming, engineering or a related field. You may also earn a master's degree to help elevate your application status and potentially improve your chances of obtaining a job. It is helpful to review the job descriptions for various DevOps positions in your location to determine what level of education is essential, as employers sometimes require different qualifications.

2. Gain relevant experience

DevOps is a senior-level career in technology. Aspiring DevOps engineers often need to first begin with entry-level positions, such as IT support specialists or IT technicians. After gaining experience in an entry-level role, you can apply for higher-level positions that require more knowledge. You can also seek management roles to earn valuable leadership experience. These roles at the beginning of your career can provide you with the fundamental skills and capabilities necessary for performing more advanced work and responsibilities. Furthermore, employers usually expect their applicants to have several years of experience in order to qualify for a DevOps engineering position.

Related: How To Write Experience on a Resume (With Examples)

3. Get certified

Certifications not only demonstrate your knowledge to the employer, but it can also differentiate yourself from other applicants who many not have the same qualifications as you. A diversified set of certifications covering the many facets of a DevOps engineer's responsibilities is ideal. Some employers might also require specific certifications to qualify for the role you want. Therefore, consider earning common certifications many employers seek and then work toward more advanced certifications once you gain some experience in the role.

4. Create a resume

Craft your resume to highlight your experience and skills to prospective employers. List your jobs from most to least recent, and share any achievement that could relate to a position in DevOps. For any academic qualification you have earned, add those as well. Include any active certifications and transferable skills you possess. You can also diversify your resume by including hard and soft skills. Ensure any information you include in your resume is accurate and verifiable. Use a professional tone and simplistic structure consistently throughout the document. Proofread it for grammar errors as well.

Related: 10 Resume Writing Tips To Help You Land a Job

5. Apply for openings

Search for DevOps engineer job listing requirements that align with your experience. Consider submitting a cover letter that further shows your capabilities for a DevOps role. If you work for a company that has DevOps positions, you may apply for a promotion. Ask your manager or human resources department if any openings relate to your current experience level in DevOps. You can also search for jobs on career platforms and job boards. Carefully review the job descriptions to verify that you have the qualifications employers are asking for.

FAQ about DevOps engineers

Here are some frequently asked questions about DevOps engineers:

What skills are necessary for a DevOps engineer?

  • Problem solving: Problem solving is a necessary skill that allows DevOps engineers to diagnosis issues that arise in their work process and create solutions. Whether one of their programs has an error or there is a bottleneck in their workflow, these individuals need the ability to solve critical problems.

  • Critical thinking: Critical thinking is a skill that relates to a person's ability to understand and comprehend various circumstantial conditions. With this capability, you can apply your fundamental knowledge to a variety of situations.

  • Communication: Since DevOps engineers usually work on a team with other engineers and IT professionals, they frequently engage and communicate with these individuals. Therefore, communication skills are essential in a person's ability to accurately express their opinions and work related progress.

  • Attention to detail: These professionals often handle and work with highly complex technology and coding processes. As such, they must have a very keen sense of detail in order to review every factor of a project and then determine how those aspects either benefit or hinder the overall performance.

  • Analytical skills: This is a skill that allows a DevOps engineer to review information and then mentally deconstruct it to gather significant and useful information. By being analytical, these highly technical professionals can review data and retrieve details that can help them improve their workflow and decision making processes.

  • Time management: DevOps engineers sometimes have to complete their projects by a specific deadline, usually with intermediate benchmarks and interval quotas. Therefore, they need to be able to manage their time well so they can improve their productivity and meet critical deliverable time points.

  • Adaptability: Sometimes errors occur or there are structural changes in how a project operates or needs to finish. Under these unforeseen circumstances, adaptability ensures that a DevOps engineer can adjust to shift in their workflow and continue to produce the same high quality results.

  • Computer competency: As highly technical professionals, they frequently use complex computer systems in their daily work. To perform their duties accurately, they need to be very knowledge in using a variety of software, hardware and other technological tools.

  • Coding: This is a complex skill that allows someone to understand and utilize computer languages. These professionals should be familiar with using several code based computer languages to help optimise their performance and diversify the work they are able to conduct.

  • Agile: This a project management and workflow system that uses the Agile methodology. Many employers expect DevOps engineers to understand how this method works so they can implement it successfully when completing their daily tasks and responsibilities.

What is the salary for a DevOps engineer?

The national average salary for a DevOps engineer is ₹8,60,274 per year. This estimate is likely to vary for several reasons, such as the individual's work history, geographical location, employer, certifications and academic achievements. As you gain more experience in the field, you may be able to leverage your expertise to negotiate for a higher salary.

Here are the cities that provide the highest salaries for DevOps engineers:

  • Greater Noida, Uttar Pradesh: ₹4,77,551 per year

  • Chennai, Tamil Nadu: ₹7,86,274 per year

  • Mumbai, Maharashtra: ₹8,10,246 per year

  • Pune, Maharashtra: ₹8,64,281 per year

  • Hyderabad, Telangana: ₹8,67,760 per year

  • Noida, Uttar Pradesh: ₹8,78,806 per year

  • Bengaluru, Karnataka: ₹9,65,604 per year

  • Gurgaon, Haryana: ₹10,15,823 per year

Related: Salary Negotiation Tips and Examples

What is a DevOps engineer's work environment?

DevOps engineers primarily work in computer system design industries. They can also gain employment with manufacturing, management and software publishing companies. These individuals work autonomously and independently, though most of their efforts are for a team oriented project. As such, they may have to frequently communicate with their colleagues to convey project changes, solve problems and review progress reports. They usually work full time and during normal business hours. However, sometimes they may have to work overtime or even on the weekend to meet critical deadlines.

How long does it take to become a DevOps engineer?

It usually takes four to five years to become a DevOps engineer. However, this estimate can change depending on several factors. Earning your academic qualifications as a full time or part-time student can affect the pace at which you are able to complete your degree. Part-time students take fewer classes per cycle and therefore, it can take longer for them to become DevOps engineers. The time it takes for you to secure your certifications can also influence this timeline. Essentially, the sooner you earn your credentials, the quicker you may be able to gain employment in this occupation.

Salary figures reflect data listed on Indeed Salaries at time of writing. Salaries may vary depending on the hiring organisation and a candidate's experience, academic background and location. (international only)

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