Are you ready to take the next step on your developer portal procurement journey?
You’ve already done the work of identifying why and how an internal developer portal (IDP) could benefit your organization. You know that by adopting a robust IDP you’ll equip your team with a single source of truth for all services, the power to keep things standardized as you scale your software architecture, and the ability to execute core operational tasks from the same central point of action. In short, a developer portal could help take your team to the next level, faster—now you just need to get your executives on board.
The path from finding the right technology for your team to getting it through procurement can be a long one, but having buy-in from your leaders is bound to help expedite the process. With that in mind, here are four steps you can take to convince your leaders that an IDP makes sense for your business as a whole. (Read to the end to find an editable pitch deck in Notion to help you make your case internally!)
Step 1: Get on the same page as your leaders
The most important thing to remember when you’re talking to executives is that they care about different things than you do. As a technical lead, you want technologies that empower your team members to do their jobs better, integrate seamlessly with other tools, and drive consistency across your systems. Meanwhile, your leadership team has other priorities. They make choices based on what enables the business to meet broader goals around profit, market share, and growth.
To speak to them in a language they understand, you need to bridge the gap and show them how an IDP supports their goals. To start, make sure you have a clear understanding of what those goals and priorities might be. These will vary to some extent from company to company, but typically include the following:
Shorter time to market: Tech businesses are moving faster than ever, and to be competitive in any industry means being able to deploy new products and features faster than your competitors. This agility is key for acquiring and retaining customers.
Developer efficiency: Developers are an expensive resource for any tech company. Leaders will want to make sure that developers are operating as efficiently as possible, with the ability to focus on valuable development work that keeps them engaged and drives the business forward.
Reliable and available products: There’s a huge reputational and financial risk to any incident that brings a product or feature down. Customers are more demanding than ever, and one poor experience can drive them away so leaders want to trust that the company’s product is reliable and that any incidents can be addressed quickly.
Informed decision making: Where possible, leaders want visibility into data that helps them make better decisions around what to invest in, where to allocate resources, and how to plan for the future. A tool that provides clear insights to leadership is invaluable.
If you can clearly identify how a comprehensive IDP can help support these priorities, you’ll be better positioned to get leadership to advocate for its procurement. Below, we show you just how to do that.
Step 2: Map IDP benefits to leadership goals
Beyond being useful and enabling technology for your engineering organization, an IDP has positive impacts that ripple across the business. To show you what we mean, here are some of the ways that the OpsLevel developer portal solves the critical cross-departmental challenges that are top of mind for most leaders.
OpsLevel makes it easier for developers to move faster and with more confidence. A centralized software catalog means that engineers can have self-serve access to all the information, tools, and templates they need to build, ship, and maintain features. This optimizes workflows between platform and product engineers, improves the developer experience, and ensures that team members are focused on core, high-value tasks, rather than wasting time waiting for inputs or reinventing the wheel.
OpsLevel also helps platform and SRE teams implement best practices and standards without disrupting the speed of development. Engineers stay consistent and true to standards by only leveraging the templates and tools available to them via the portal. This means that the software being deployed is reliable and meets the quality standards required by today’s customers. Teams shipping high-quality code are also better able to ensure the availability of the product, which is a core differentiator for tech companies.
With OpsLevel, platform and SRE teams are freed up to do more strategic work. Platform engineers get more time to refine the platform by introducing automation, building feature requests and dev tooling, managing security audits and compliance work, and researching functions to improve the developer experience. On the other hand, SRE engineers are able to better embed themselves within teams to drive further adoption of tools and standards—which ultimately improve the developer quality of life and improve the ROI for the business.
From a visibility standpoint, OpsLevel feature makes it easier for leaders to access rollup metrics and insights from entire domains of the business. From our domains view, they can see what their total AWS spend is, what their total footprint is in another area, and more. This level of insight enables them to make data-driven decisions when it comes to budgeting and planning projects for the team—initiatives which ladder up to the rest of the business.
As a developer platform, OpsLevel brings together the tools engineering teams need to do their best work. Ultimately, it enhances developers and enables them to become stronger contributors to overarching business goals.
Step 3: Get comfortable talking about pricing
Once you get in front of your leadership to talk to them about a new tool or technology, they’re going to ask how much it costs. At the end of the day, a big part of their decision making will factor in available budgets and potential savings.
Engineering teams vary wildly from company to company both in terms of their size and structure, as well as the way they do things. That’s why IDP providers often adopt flexible pricing models. At OpsLevel, we offer custom pricing plans based on users, services, and volume.
For a clearer picture of how much OpsLevel could cost your business, you can share some quick details on our pricing page and we’ll respond with an estimate based on the size of your team and the number of services you have.
As you get into the conversation around pricing, remember to also account for the savings and returns on investment (ROI) that will come from using a developer platform. For instance, if the IDP makes your developers more efficient, then the business is saving money from time that was previously spent waiting or performing non-critical tasks.
Our recent customer survey found that OpsLevel customers save an average of $323 per developer per month—multiply that number by the size of your team across the full calendar year and the ROI is significant.
Step 4: Share real-life examples
You’ve got your executive buyer hooked on the potential value that an IDP has for your business—now what? One thing we’ve found really helps our champions communicate the true impact of our platform is showing real ROI data from some of our customers. Across the board, we’re seeing tech companies get exceptional results from using OpsLevel, and they get access to these benefits in just a matter of days.
Duolingo was able to implement their developer portal in just 7 days, and saw an almost-immediate 4x increase in visibility.
These are tangible results that are making these industry leaders become more agile and impactful within their industry segments.
Advocate for your choices
As an engineering lead, you do a lot of thinking around how your team could operate better. You have real, intimate knowledge of where the gaps are that need fixing, the friction points your team members face every day, and the missed opportunities in how product and platform engineers work together. You know that each of these challenges have an impact on how your team performs and how it contributes to the business as a whole. These are all things you should keep in mind as you talk to your leadership.
Ready to have the conversation with your leaders? We’ve created a Notion template that you can use to make your points clearly and really articulate the value of an IDP for your team. Check out the preview below and make a copy of it for your own presentation.
Once you have your execs on board, book a demo with our team and we’ll walk them through what else OpsLevel can do.