Automating software development and speeding up innovation

In this Q&A, Jim Rose — CEO at CircleCI — discusses the importance of automating software development to speed up business innovation

Almost three years ago Microsoft’s Satya Nadella famously coined that “every business will be a software business”. Today, the $500 billion global software market is on track to double to $1 trillion by 2030.

J.P. Morgan is on record as having 40,000 software engineers (more than Alphabet) in their most recent filing. Every major enterprise company is racing to hire engineers in order to out-develop their competition. The big problem is that traditional software development is slow, fragmented and wasteful.

For example, each week the average software engineer will spend 4 hours waiting for tests to complete, 3.5 hours waiting for builds, and 3 hours on environment management — more than a quarter of their work week not actually creating anything of value. When you consider that engineers are often the highest paid people in organisations it’s clearly a big problem. However, things are changing.

One of the leading development platforms, CircleCI, made the bet that AI and automation would be the key to speeding up software innovation and freeing up engineers to do important work. In the last year the company introduced a number of automation and machine learning enhancements that reduced the amount of time that engineers wait around by 50%. It’s one of the many reasons that more than 300,000 developers including those at Facebook, Spotify, GoPro, InstaCart and many others have turned to CircleCI to move faster.

Leading the company is Jim Rose — a six-time founder with past investment from Google Ventures, Foundation Capital, and Marc Andreessen. Since joining CircleCI a little more than four years ago, Rose has increased revenue by more than 450% and grown the company into a truly exciting entity.

Interested in learning more about automating software development and speeding up innovation, Information Age spoke to Rose on the subject.

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