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October 19, 2023

Why Platform Engineers Trust Harness

Table of Contents

Key takeaway

In the ever-evolving world of DevOps, platform engineers constantly seek tools that can scale with their needs. We at Harness believe in delivering an excellent developer experience where best practices can be shared and governance can be effective without being burdensome.

We feel that this strategy has been reaffirmed - Harness ranked 1st in the Gartner report for the Platform Engineering use case in the 2023 Critical Capabilities for DevOps Platforms report.

The Report

The “research allows buyers of DevOps platforms to rank the ability of 12 vendors to provide 12 critical capabilities across four common use cases." The report defines Platform Engineering as “ Ability to target a broad set of cloud-native environments and an overall strong outer-loop capability supporting progressive release, containers and package management.” This makes sense to us at Harness. Platform teams are scaling new workloads, cloud infrastructure and consumable software delivery.

We are proud to have received the highest scores in the Platform Engineering use case, but we believe that’s only part of why Platform teams turn to Harness to improve developer experience and effectiveness.

Why Platform Engineers Love Harness

Platform engineering teams are typically challenged with scale. They need to support a large developer community with a relatively small team. They know that handcrafting pipelines, infrastructure and governance for each team just won’t work.

Harness acts as a force multiplier for these teams, having been architected to scale configuration. 

  • Templated configuration enables platform teams to capture automation that works and reuse it by reference. As they learn and improve the templates, pipelines based on those templates get those changes. Templates ensure that adopting best practices is the easiest way for application teams to proceed, driving standardization and jump starting productivity.
  • Policy as code techniques help platform teams balance freedom for the individual application and stream-aligned teams with the need to apply governance policies consistently. With Open Policy Agent (OPA) policies, they can establish rules like “Feature Flags must be enabled in QA before Prod” while still permitting platform consumers to edit their pipelines.
  • Easy to configure: Whether crafting a new pipeline or customizing an existing template, Harness strives to simplify the experience. With Harness, a platform engineer can get more done with less hassle. 
  • Modular and Coherent: With a move towards tool consolidation, Harness provides a coherent all-in-one platform. At the same time, it doesn’t require total adoption. If an existing tool is doing well, you can skip that Harness module and Harness will integrate with what you have.
  • Multi-cloud native: Platform teams are often aligned with cloud-native workloads, and Harness’s deep integration with cloud-native platforms and approaches makes it a great fit.

Doubling Down on Platform Engineering

This analysis for this report predates the release of two new Harness modules that focus on the platform engineer:

  1. Infrastructure as Code Management (IaCM): Platform engineering teams need to provide cloud infrastructure automation as well as DevOps capabilities. With these teams in mind, we created IaCM as a CI/CD solution for infrastructure changes. With IaCM, platform engineers can create infrastructure templates while allowing developers the flexibility to manage variables that govern key properties. The pipeline makes it easy to run appropriate security and linting checks, and approvals can gate both the nature of the changes and the projected cost impacts of a change.
  2. Internal Developer Portal: With a mission to drive developer experience, platform teams increasingly turn to IDPs to reduce the burden of cognitive load for developers by making information easier to discover and enabling self-service automation. The Harness IDP provides a catalog built on OSS technology, advanced service scorecards and a self-service hub powered by our industry-leading pipeline technology. 

Looking Forward

The success of platform engineering teams reduces burnout and increases developer effectiveness. This is good stuff. At Harness, we look forward to continuing to partner with and deliver for the Platform engineers. 

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Gartner,. “Critical Capabilities for DevOps Platforms”, Published 4 September 2023. By Thomas Murphy, Manjunath Bhat, Joachim Herschmann, Daniel Betts, Chris Saunderson, Hassan Ennaciri, Bill Holz, Peter Hyde

GARTNER is a registered trademark and service mark of Gartner, Inc. and/or its affiliates in the U.S. and internationally and is used herein with permission. All rights reserved. Gartner does not endorse any vendor, product or service depicted in its research publications, and does not advise technology users to select only those vendors with the highest ratings or other designation. Gartner research publications consist of the opinions of Gartner’s research organization and should not be construed as statements of fact. Gartner disclaims all warranties, expressed or implied, with respect to this research, including any warranties of merchantability or fitness for a particular purpose.

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