Ben Johnson, Founder & CEO“Don’t find fault, find a remedy.” This quote by Henry Ford, founder of the Ford Motor Company, encapsulates the intellectual sentiments and entrepreneurial determination that he leveraged to streamline the manufacturing of interchangeable automotive parts and build over 15 million affordable automobiles in the early 1900s. The idea of a sustainable continuous improvement system: engineering, fabrication, assembling, and testing the end product simultaneously, is considered to be one of the earliest instances of today’s DevOps approach. Thus, what started as an industrial manufacturing solution to build products faster, has now become an exemplary model in the world of IT for software development. Organizations today invest heavily in DevOps to improve the speed and quality of their product’s lifecycle. Ford’s innovative assembly line concept has revolutionized DevOps practices, leading the IT realm closer to achieving their automation goals and overcoming various developmental and operational hurdles.
Following in Ford’s conceptual footsteps in the present day is Ben Johnson, a veteran technical advisor, software development operations manager, and CEO of leading DevOps solutions provider, Particle41. Highlighting the nuances of a DevOps approach, he explains: by bringing the traditionally disparate software development (Dev) and information technology operations (Ops) together, one can accelerate the time to market of software. “While every company wants to leverage this software development model, it is the startups and the small- and medium-sized businesses that experience the greatest setback in employing this approach due to their limited IT resources,” Johnson points out. This is where Particle41—a leading-edge IT company founded by Johnson—comes in. “We aim to be the DevOps teammate for companies looking to complete their software development project expeditiously,” says Johnson, who leads the company as its CEO.
Particle41, the company’s unique name comes from the 41st element in the periodic table, Niobium—a superconductor at cryogenic temperatures, which possesses the ability to strengthen the metallic bonds in an alloy formation. Just like Niobium, Johnson believes that Particle41’s DevOps team is the resilient force behind a software company’s product development initiative.
We do not want to be designated simply as software developers; we want to be responsible for managing a client’s entire project along with their DevOps needs
Boasting a broad range of capabilities in the DevOps realm, Particle41 not only helps a client build software faster but also improves a company’s cloud IT infrastructure by adding automation capabilities and implementing better security, compliance, and disaster recovery solutions. “Our process entails devoting a considerable amount of time to understand a client’s requirements and then breakdown the needs to fulfill individual business use cases,” expresses Johnson. Additionally, by adopting the discipline of site reliability engineering (SRE), Particle41 helps its clients witness a significant and discernible acceleration of product development and delivery in the supply chain.
Elucidating the success of this approach, Johnson shares an anecdote, where Particle41 helped an established music record company broadcast an award show on a national scale. In this scenario, Particle41 was more than just an IT company extending its DevOps approach to build software. “We do not want to be designated simply as software developers; we want to be responsible for managing a client’s entire project along with their DevOps needs,” says Johnson. Particle41’s DevOps experts participated in the regulation of the uptime, stability, and release engineering of all third-party digital assets that were used for the award show’s data transmission. Consequently, Particle41 was able to circulate massive bursts of incoming and outgoing data during the event, and successfully ensure an uninterrupted broadcast of the show.
At the core of Particle41’s continued success in the DevOps landscape is the significance of 3Vs: velocity, visibility, and vision. Throughout the duration of an IT project, Particle41’s customers are regularly updated on the status of the products and informed about the future opportunities and trends in the DevOps market. As the company’s roadmap, Johnson informs, “Our pursuit is to constantly make use of new technologies like machine learning and big data, and bolster the efficacy of our DevOps approach.”