Iliyan Vutov, Telerik Academy Upskill: DevOps is to be effective

Success Stories

Iliyan Vutov, Telerik Academy Upskill: DevOps is to be effective

DevOps has a promising future, and those who master it (Upskill DevOps, maybe?) will have a wide range of career opportunities.

And the data shows it.

DevOps engineers have seen over 14% growth in their salaries since 2021, according to This puts them behind only Product Managers and well ahead of System Engineers (7.7%) and many other professions.

According to a report from CodinGame, DevOps is one of the most in-demand technical skills for 2023. More than 36% of the surveyed recruiters reported a shortage of candidates with DevOps skills. Additionally, when IT specialists were asked about the skills they want to acquire in 2023, DevOps ranked among the top 5.

But why? Why is DevOps so important today and, obviously, for the many years to come? 

DevOps is here to solve one problem only: effectiveness," shared Iliyan Vutov. He added that in the past, there existed a substantial gap between developers and system administrators.

photo of iliyan vutov a telerik academy upskill devops lead trainer with his son

"It was a gap that no one wanted to acknowledge, and, as it turns out, people were comfortable with it. However, there was no efficiency, and the margin of error was high."

Effective in today's challenging environment is crucial, but DevOps offers much more.

We're delighted to have Iliyan as one of the lead trainers in our 3-month practical Upskill DevOps program. You still have time to apply; the deadline is midnight, October 8. Together with Daniel, whom you may have already met, they will work closely with you to help you build a successful career as a DevOps engineer.

If you're still on the fence about whether this is the right career move for you, keep reading – we believe this may convince you :)

Hi Iliyan, we're thrilled to have you here! Could you take us on a journey through your career path? How did you transition from system administration to your first DevOps role? Are there any defining moments? 

Thanks for having me. The feelings are mutual! 

Well, it all started almost 20 years ago when I had to assume the role of a System administrator in the local ISP. It's been quite a journey since then, wandering between Web Hosting, ISP, TelCo, and IT management just to land my current position as Lead DevOps in Dext (former ReceiptBank). 

In your view, what's the essence of DevOps, and how do you see the role of a DevOps engineer in today's tech landscape? 

Back in the day, there was a huge gap between developers and system administrators. A gap no one wanted to acknowledge, and as it turns out, people were comfortable with it. 

Those two groups of individuals often had different objectives and different performance indicators and essentially worked distant from each other. But then there was no efficiency, and the margin of error was high.

The DevOps movement started to coalesce sometime between 2007 and 2008 when IT operations and software development communities raised concerns about what they felt was a fatal level of dysfunction in the industry. They railed against the traditional software development model, which called for those who write code to be organizationally and functionally apart from those who deploy and support that code. 

And that's how it all started. To me, the DevOps methodology (or even a mindset, some may say) is here to close that gap, allowing a more efficient way of delivery and minimizing the Time-to-Market.  

DevOps is not a role, but I see it as a "hat" one can put on to solve efficiency problems.

What is your favourite part of being a DevOps engineer? Can you share a particularly memorable project or challenge you've tackled? 

I remember when I joined Dext in the winter of 2015. I came from managing an IT team for a BPO company and jumped into DevOps. It took me a while to dust myself off and roll up my sleeves. I embraced the idea of "working together" and soon saw the result, which was great.

In 2016, we had to move the whole infrastructure from bare state to AWS. We could do it with zero downtime overnight since we had about 99% coverage of our application in code, good observability, and open communication between developers and operations. Even though a lot has changed since then, and we've improved the technology and our tools significantly, this will be a moment I'll always remember.

Our diverse audience includes sysadmins, junior DevOps professionals, IT operations, and developers. How can each of these groups benefit from upskilling to become DevOps engineers, and what unique strengths do they bring to the field?"

With the risk of repeating myself, DevOps is a way of thinking. It doesn't matter if you come from a Dev, QA, System Administrator, or Support background. DevOps is here to solve one problem only - effectiveness.
Of course, having a previous background in the field would help a lot. If you're a developer, you'll apply dev principles to automation. If you're a QA, you'll approach the problems with the mindset of quality and how to test and enforce it. If you worked as a support, you may be cautious about how our actions reflect on our clients and how to make their lives easier. Every person has something to offer and something to gain from DevOps. 

photo of iliyan vutov a telerik academy upskill devops lead trainer with his son

Can you explain how our Upskill program caters to experienced professionals and what sets it apart in the market?

We tailored this program to address fundamental questions and provide practical solutions.

- What problem are we trying to solve? 
- What tools are there to help us solve it? 
- How does it all work together?

To address these questions, we've assembled a set of theoretical lessons complemented by practical sessions. These sessions cover topics such as finding the right tool for the right job, minimising time to market, reducing error rates, and working more effectively.

What are some common challenges individuals might face when transitioning to DevOps roles, and how does the Upskill program address these challenges? 

I think the biggest challenge is shifting your mindset. I believe this program would help ease that transition by showing that it may sound complicated, but it’s not, and it all makes sense. 

For those aspiring to upgrade their skills or just embarking on their DevOps journey, what guidance or advice would you offer to set them on the right path? 

Oh, it's simple - just jump. There's nothing to be afraid of.  

Thank you, Iliyan!

Take your career to the next level with Telerik Academy Upskill DevOps. You still have time to apply by October 8.

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