Challenges of platform engineering and potential risks

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This article discusses some of the common risks and challenges of platform engineering. It also provides some of the best practices for handling these difficulties.

Note: This blog post was created by the StackSpot Prompt Engineering team with the support of AI tools. This content underwent rigorous review for technical accuracy, content relevance, and well-written quality before its publication. Enjoy the read!

Platform engineering is undoubtedly a critical component of modern digital infrastructure. It enables businesses to scale, innovate, and stay competitive. Yet, like any other discipline, there are some risks and challenges of platform engineering. This blog post will discuss some common hurdles and how platform engineers can navigate them effectively.

The challenge of constant evolution

Technological evolution is a double-edged sword in platform engineering. While new technologies unlock tremendous possibilities, they also make the platform ecosystem incredibly complex and volatile. It’s a field where today’s cutting-edge technology can become obsolete tomorrow.

As a platform engineer, the burden of mastering these evolving tools and technologies is high. It requires continuous learning and staying up-to-date with the latest trends, which can be time-consuming and sometimes overwhelming.

Battle with infrastructure complexity

The complexity of today’s digital infrastructure is another significant challenge in platform engineering. Dealing with distributed systems, microservices, serverless architectures, multi-cloud environments, and containerization can be daunting.

The more complex the system, the harder it is to manage and troubleshoot. It takes expertise and a deep understanding of various components and their interdependencies to navigate this complexity.

Managing operational risks

Operational risks are a constant companion in platform engineering. System failures, security breaches, and performance issues can cause businesses substantial financial and reputational damage.

Handling these operational risks requires a strong understanding of best practices for system design, disaster recovery, and incident management. It also demands a proactive mindset to prevent issues before they happen, which is easier said than done.

The juggling act with resources

Balancing performance, cost, and efficiency is a constant juggling act in platform engineering. Achieving high availability and performance often means leveraging more resources, leading to higher costs. On the other hand, focusing too much on cost optimization may compromise the system’s performance or availability.

Making the right decisions requires a thorough understanding of the system’s needs and capabilities. It also necessitates a deep knowledge of the tools and services available in the market and their cost implications.

Securing the platform

Security is a paramount concern in platform engineering. The increasing sophistication of cyber threats and regulatory compliance requirements make this a critical challenge.

Securing a platform is not a one-time task. It’s an ongoing process that requires continuous monitoring, timely updates, and quick response to security incidents. The rise of DevSecOps underscores this, integrating security into the development and operation of platforms.

Navigating human factors

People are the most crucial asset in platform engineering but can pose significant challenges. From skills shortages to communication gaps and resistance to change, human factors are often the most complex problems to solve.

Creating a culture of collaboration, continuous learning, and adaptability is critical to overcoming these challenges of platform engineering. It also requires effective leadership and management skills, which are sometimes overlooked in the technical field of platform engineering.

Challenges of platform engineering: in conclusion

Despite these challenges, platform engineering continues to be an exciting and rewarding field. The key is to recognize these risks and challenges and tackle them head-on.

Remember, the challenges of platform engineering are not roadblocks but opportunities to learn and grow. So, embrace them, learn from them, and use them to drive your success in platform engineering.

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As experienced software engineers, we understand that you seek to provide efficient and standardized solutions that allow your team to focus on solving business problems, not on assembling the necessary infrastructure to tackle these issues. We recognize that time is precious and efficiency is vital. That’s why we’ve developed StackSpot, our Enterprise Developer Platform designed specifically for professionals like you.

How about a hands-on test of StackSpot, completely adapted to your company’s unique context and challenges? Our goal is to demonstrate how our platform can simplify the distribution of guidelines and make their application easier, saving you time and boosting your team’s productivity.

Book a demo now! We’re eager to get to know you and your challenges. Let’s transform the landscape of your software engineering together with StackSpot.

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