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10/9/2023
10 minutes

Celebrating 10 Years of Copado: A Decade of DevOps Evolution and Growth

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10 Years of Copado

Introduction

As Copado celebrates its 10th anniversary, we reflect on the remarkable journey of the DevOps industry and Copado's significant contributions to its growth. Over the past decade, DevOps has transformed the way organizations develop, deliver, and maintain software, enabling them to achieve faster time-to-market, improved quality, and increased collaboration. Read on to explore the evolution of the DevOps industry over that period, examine why Copado was founded, how it has grown, and make a few predictions for the future of DevOps for the next 10 years.

DevOps Circa 2013

A decade ago, DevOps was still an emerging concept, with organizations recognizing the need to bridge the gap between development and operations teams. The industry witnessed the rise of agile methodologies, the introduction of continuous integration, and automation as key drivers of DevOps adoption.

While this was true in traditional code development, another industry was just coming into its prime at the same time, Software as a Service. “Cloud” computing in 2013 was bifurcating into Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) and Platform as a Service (PaaS).

IaaS as epitomized by AWS and Google Cloud eliminated the need for companies to build data centers, but it still allowed the developer to specify the operating system, run time options, and software libraries. IaaS still requires that the developer manage every aspect of the software build.

PaaS systems like Salesforce eliminated much of the lower level software management and even provided a point and click, low code development environment, so the developers could focus entirely on solving business problems. The offering even included Software as a Service (SaaS) which provided 80% of the application itself. Developers were free to focus on that last little bit of code that made the application specific to their needs.

While IaaS solutions accelerated the need for DevOps, PaaS/SaaS systems reduced the amount of work required to implement changes to the point where companies could manage software without investing in a DevOps process or tools for a while longer.

Copado’s Founding

As Salesforce grew and added more capabilities, it became more powerful, but also more complex, requiring multiple development teams and collaboration tools to manage them. The AppExchange grew from 100 solutions when it was launched in 2005 to more than 1000 applications by 2013 which meant that many customers were managing dozens of applications on the platform. Some, like Veeva, were just as powerful as the Sales, Marketing, and Service applications provided by Salesforce.

Federico Larsen and Philipp Rackwitz were consultants in 2012 responsible for doing a Veeva rollout for 30 countries. Given the capabilities of the day, they recommended a single production org for all users so they could share best practices, data, and reporting. (Remember, Data Cloud and Tableau weren't even a dream back then.) But then Fede and Philipp had to deliver their recommendation. It was chaos from the very beginning. Italy made changes that overwrote Germany. Austria changed settings from Canada. The system became unstable and no group was able to deploy anything. They were faced with a choice. Either they give up and ruin their reputation, or they could provide a way to solve the problem. They couldn’t afford to give up, so they began implementing processes and scripts to control the madness and the next year completed the implementation successfully.

After they completed that contract, they realized that others must be going through the same pain they had survived. So they built a product that incorporated everything they learned from the experience and decided to publish it on AppExchange. But what would they name the company?

Federico and some of the early team members are originally from Argentina. So while trying to come up with a name, they kept saying “I don’t know what to call it, but the idea is muy Copado!” which in Argentine Spanish loosely translates into “Very Cool!”. So why not just name the company Copado?

They thought that it would be as easy as customers downloading the packaging, paying by credit card, and using their tools with no support while they surfed their favorite beaches. What they quickly realized was that their initial customers were enterprises, which meant implementation, training, conversations around security and compliance, and all of the hand holding required by an enterprise sale. And since it was a subscription model, you had to ensure the customer’s success in order to get the renewal.

Before long they were replicating the complete Salesforce model on a much smaller scale with sales engineers, customer success managers, Account Executives, and a development team to continue keeping up with the new features that Salesforce added three times a year.

10 Years of Achievement

During the first five years the company grew slowly with the entire team in a single office located in Madrid Spain. As a testament to the efficiency of the SaaS model and their business skills, they grew the revenue to four million dollars without any outside investment. Their customer list was full of famous Fortune 500 enterprises that startups 10 times their size would die for. For you entrepreneurs out there, this is what product market fit looks like!

This early success was noticed by one of the premier US based venture capital firms and several angel investors. In 2018 Copado did their first round of financing and began to scale. The expanding revenue and funding enabled further investment in development and the acquisition of 4 companies in a 2 year period.

At ten years old, the company has become the market leader in DevOps for Salesforce and transformed their Release Management tool into a fully featured DevOps platform with the introduction of Copado 1. Their acquisitions added a second product line and established Copado as one of the premier testing companies in the world. The company has even launched DevOps Exchange in the model of AppExchange and created a community of more than 83,000 members worldwide.

The Next 10 Years of DevOps

So what does the future hold for Copado, DevOps, and Testing?

Generative AI has transformed the software industry and provided endless possibilities for innovation in DevOps and Testing. It has the opportunity to make app builders more efficient and realize our mission of making release days obsolete.

Our first AI offering was released earlier this year, just months after Chat GPT took the world by storm. Federico and his Copado Labs team created and released AI Companion.

AI Companion uses the power of Generative AI to enrich User Stories and create release notes.

Enriching User Stories is critical for Generative AI. We all know the phrase “Garbage in - Garbage out”. The logical conclusion then is that to get the best possible Code and Tests, you have to ensure the User Story is well written and complete.

Creating release notes from the release is a huge benefit for our customers' users. Being agile means that User Stories either make it into a release or they get pushed to a future sprint. But that often happens at the 11th hour. How can you create a proper release document when you don’t know until the day before if a feature will make it or not? AI Companion solves that problem by writing the release notes for you.

In fact, AI Companion can enrich any record in Salesforce and enables users to create and share their own prompts to bring Generative AI to more processes in Salesforce.

CopadoGPT has been trained on all of the content available on our Community so Users can instantly answer any question they have about Copado, including how to accomplish any task and how to fix any deployment issues they encounter. Our own support team began using it and reduced the time to first response by 60% in less than a month! We are rolling out to our customers now and expect to embed it within our app soon after that.

Generative AI is just as important for testing. Writing scripts for CRT is already very easy, but be on the lookout for announcements later this year that will open up test development to more people than ever before.

The future of DevOps will be about supercharging teams to accomplish more with less. And with all of the heavy lifting handled by Copado, Continuous Integration and Deliver will become Continuous Innovation.

Copado Day

Copado Day is a company holiday where employees around the world organize local events to support the causes they care about. Whether it's cleaning up a beach, serving in a soup kitchen, or volunteering at a food bank, each employee is given the day off so that they can give back to their community.

We have been doing this for several years now, but to celebrate our 10th anniversary, we are doubling down on Copado Day. Around the world our teams will be spending October 9th giving back. We have even scheduled our second half kickoff event in India to coincide with Copado Day. This event will bring together all of our product teams from around the world in Mumbai to not only align on objectives, but to join together in a 150+ person volunteering initiative.

As Copado celebrates its 10-year anniversary, we recognize the significant growth and evolution of the DevOps industry. Copado's commitment to empowering Salesforce development teams has been instrumental in driving innovation and success. Looking ahead, the future of DevOps holds immense potential, with increased automation, enhanced security practices, and the continued adoption of cloud-native and multi-cloud strategies. As Copado continues to innovate and support organizations on their DevOps journey, we are excited to see what the next 10 years will bring.


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About The Author

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