As an enterprise-focused developer advocate, a major part of my role involves helping organisations identify and remove silos in their development process that slow the pace of innovation. Although most enterprises understand there are significant benefits to a streamlined and progressive development cycle, many are either unsure how to implement one effectively, or unprepared to make the changes required.
As a direct result, too many have perpetuated silos within their development processes, which not only block collaboration and visibility but also act as a major barrier to progress.
Given the sheer speed of technological advancement in software development, it’s perhaps understandable that so many businesses are struggling to accurately plot the future of the development process. However, the reality is that technology problems are rarely caused by the technology itself. More often than not, it’s the organisational culture that’s standing in the way. Often, the status quo for a business is perfectly adequate at that moment in time, so there’s little desire to rock the boat by shaking up the organisational structure.
Perhaps it’s ironic then that the democratisation of generative AI and its introduction into the development process will expedite a cultural shift in the way enterprises organise themselves to embrace progressive software development. Sometimes the tail really does wag the dog.
Generative AI has brought about a major sea change
In a short period of time, generative AI has transformed the way software is developed by transforming developer productivity. The impact of this is nothing short of immense. Research from Github and analyst firm Keystone.AI indicates that AI developer productivity benefits look set to boost global GDP (gross domestic product) by over $1.5tn by 2030.
Such is the impact of AI, enterprises are rapidly waking up to the importance of integrating it into their development processes. Enterprises largely understand what’s at stake. Business leaders know that even small productivity enhancements can dramatically speed up time-to-innovation, providing a much needed edge over the competition. AI has the potential to be a powerful business tool and its implementation by enterprises has gone from theoretical to urgent.
The focus needs to turn to how to quickly and efficiently integrate AI. However, in too many cases, the penny still needs to drop that technology is the enabler and it is in fact the organisation and cultural norms which are standing in the way of true innovation. Businesses with a strong culture of open source are best placed to reap the rewards, because they typically embody the same collaborative values as open source communities - working transparently, openly, for the greater good of the organisation.
Given the inextricable link between productivity and speed of innovation, expect it to become a major C-Level issue that results in top-down support for eliminating stubborn silos and delivering much-needed cultural change.
Sometimes it takes a rapid technological evolution like AI to change the most rigid corporate structures. In the coming months we’ll see businesses ripping up their old ways of working and pushing to remove stubborn barriers as they attempt to unlock a new wave of innovation. AI has pushed the stakes higher than ever, and if businesses can’t adapt their structure to embrace it, they risk being quickly left behind.
Chris Reddington, is the senior manager for enterprise advocacy (international) at Github.
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