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The cloud, digital transformation yield developers more clout

Application developers have significant autonomy with respect to the selection of developer tools and technologies and exercise influence over enterprise purchasing decisions, according to a new report from International Data Corp.

Developers should be viewed as key stakeholders in IT purchasing and procurement within any organization undergoing a movement to the cloud accompanied by an internal digital transformation, the report said.

"The autonomy and influence enjoyed by developers today is illustrative of the changing role of developers in enterprise IT in an era of rapidly intensifying digital transformation," said Arnal Dayaratna, research director, software development at IDC.

"Developers are increasingly regarded as visionaries and architects of digital transformation, as opposed to executors of a pre-defined plan delivered by centralized IT leadership," Dayaratna said.

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The study is based on a worldwide survey of 2,500 developers, and also found that the contemporary landscape of software development languages and frameworks remains highly fragmented.

This creates a number of challenges for developer teams as well as potentially significant implications for the long-term support of applications built today. The languages that are likely to continue gaining traction among developers are those that support a variety of use cases and deployment environments, such as Python and Java.

Among other key findings: 67 percent of organizations have adopted DevOps practices in some way; more than 50 percent of development and test applications deployed on the public cloud are ultimately deployed in production elsewhere; about 20 percent of developers said they are "extremely familiar" with containers and microservices; and 44 percent of developers have used low-code development tools professionally at one point.

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