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November 1, 2016

10 Experts Reveal Patterns that Forecast DevOps Success

By Gene Kim

DevOps Enterprise Summit San Francisco 2016

A recent #c9d9 LiveChat hosted by Electric Cloud featured DevOps leaders speaking at DOES16.

During that event, guests were asked a question that elicited such valuable answers that we need to share it with you here.

Question: What pattern you’ve seen has led to radically improved outcomes?

1. “The number one [pattern], I’d say is collaboration, increasing collaboration.” & “One [type] is forced collaboration, which means break down the walls, let people join hand in hand doing the same thing… Get the ops people actually working with the developers under the same team.”

– Topo Pal, Director and Platform Engineering Fellow, Capital One

2. “If you’re going to have a separate tech ops organization, they need to behave as if they are providing a service…They need to internalize the fact that the developers are their customers, that the organization is their customers, that their job is not to mitigate risk, but their job is to enable their customers to move more quickly and safely.”

– Mark Imbriaco, Co-founder & CEO at Operable, Inc.

3. “The concept of horizontal thinking. Talking more about the value stream, from the business concept to delivery. How do we get more responsive to enable that, which is really our true north, is enabling responsiveness to the business and helping people understand how they fit into it.”

– Carmen DeArdo, Technology Director at Nationwide Insurance

4. “Where do we spend our time waiting? We did a survey two or three years ago…we had engineers spending 12 hours a week, just waiting.” & “Self-service is kind of a big deal, and getting out of people’s way.”

– Anders Wallgren, CTO at Electric Cloud

5. “We all want fast feedback on our work, beyond just lead times.”

– Gene Kim, founder of IT Revolution and co-author of “The Phoenix Project” and “The DevOps Handbook”

6. “I have found the biggest changes happen when you can bring people together and let them actually build relationship.”

– Stephen Mayner, SAFe® Senior Program Consultant for Scaled Agile, Inc.

7. “The ultimate step is thinking of that developer even beyond thinking of them as my customer. They’re my teammate, they’re my brethren in arms, I have information that can help them be successful, I know about them I care about them, I want them to be successful. I have their back, just like they have my back. That’s where you really see the magic happen when you get to that stage.”

– Stephen Mayner, SAFe® Senior Program Consultant for Scaled Agile, Inc.

8. “My favorite is definitely making developers responsible for doing their own testing, deployment and supporting their own applications in production… It incentivizes them to focus on their code quality with every merge and to automate their tests.”

– Ann Marie Fred, Software Engineer and Manager at IBM

9. “My passion is integrating non-functional requirements earlier in the process. For agile and DevOps to work effectively, you’ve got to figure out how not to wait until the end of whatever your deployment process is , even if it’s fast, to try to do security, performance, availability and the other ‘ilities’ that are out there. But so many times that is the stumbling block for organizations.”

– Jeffery Payne, founder of Coveros and co-founder of Cigital

10. “One of the big surprises for me is security by demonstration. Just inviting security, compliance and legal to the weekly demos. If you had told that to me that five years ago, I would have said the informality of it almost guarantees that nothing good will come out of it, yet it’s actually that informality to get feedback outside of a review process is great, because you can give advice in the earliest stages. That was shared to me by someone from GE Capital and that is just astounding to me.”

– Gene Kim, founder of IT Revolution and co-author of “The Phoenix Project” and “The DevOps Handbook

11. “I love the automated build process and the continuous integration of finding out when there’s a problem, so that we have to go and fix it before we go and ship bad stuff out to the customer. It really helps instill this concept of continuous improvement and systems thinking without even having to say those terms to people.”

– Julia Wester, Manager, Customer Education & Improvement Coach

12. “At the enterprise end of the DevOps world is realizing that most likely there is no silver bullet, so they actually need to change the way they work. They can’t just go out and buy DevOps, or become DevOps or hire DevOps. They need to actually change the way they work. So the realization of that is getting through, that’s a very good thing.”

– Kaimar Karu, Head of Product Strategy and Development at AXELOS

- About The Authors
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Gene Kim

Award winning CTO, researcher, and author.

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