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November 1, 2016

Recap from DOES16 Speakers Live Chat #4

DevOps Enterprise Summit San Francisco 2016

On October 25, Gene sat down for one of the final #c9d9 preview episodes of the upcoming DevOps Enterprise Summit. Episode #55 featured five speakers from DOES16 — Ashish Kuthiala (Sr. Director at Hewlett Packard Enterprise), Rosalind Radcliffe (Distinguished Engineer for DevOps for IBMz at IBM), Jayne Groll (CEO of DevOps Institute and President of ITSM Academy), Paula Thrasher (Application Delivery Lead at CSC), and Tyler Underwood (Sr. Application Engineer at Quicken Loans).

In this episode, Gene and the speakers shared a bit about their upcoming participation at the show and some learnings from their experiences implementing DevOps in large enterprises. Each speaker also shared their favorite DevOps pattern that is most effective for ensuring your journey is successful.

Live Video Chat #4

Exploring the DOES16 Sessions

Rosalind Radcliffe’s upcoming talk at the DevOps Enterprise Summit will speak to how Walmart leveraged their mainframe team to solve a big issue. “It’s a fun story — it’s all about the fact they had this problem,” said Radcliffe. “They needed a caching service. The distributed teams were doing everything they could to find a caching service that would scale and meet their needs within the organization. And nobody thought about asking the mainframe team.” Ultimately, the mainframe team built a caching service — one that could scale and meet the needs of the organization — and despite skepticism from many folks within the enterprise, it was ultimately the long-term answer for their caching needs.

Paula Thrasher’s upcoming presentation at DOES16 will center on an intense project when the company was splitting and how DevOps helped make a seemingly impossible transition navigable. Out of chaos and turmoil, Thrasher and her organization were able to find out valuable lessons, not only about their capabilities, but about the power of DevOps itself. “Because we were forced to automate so many things and test so much and were so worried about breaking something, we got really creative,” said Thrasher. “We learned that fast and quality are not enemies.”

Ashish Kuthiala’s session will address the massive transitions that HP has powered through during a similar split. When HP Inc. and HP Enterprise divided, it presented massive challenges for Kuthiala and his team — challenges they were able to overcome through DevOps. “You’re talking about a $100 billion company splitting into two. As that was just getting finalized, two more splits and mergers were getting announced.” But because Kuthiala and his team were set up as a DevOps organization, they were able to adjust and move forward. In Kuthiala’s words, “We couldn’t have asked for a better strategy for our IT organization to handle this split.”

Tyler Underwood talked about leading and championing change, and his DOES16 presentation that will focus on how Quicken Loans’ work on the Rocket Loans project helped bring forth an organizational transformation to DevOps. “What we figured out was developers need to more directly understand how infrastructure and operations are working. And then infrastructure and operations need to understand what the developers are doing and how they’re doing it — we really needed to bridge that gap and collaborate.” Underwood’s DOES16 session will address this massive transformation and how it is powering one of the country’s largest financial enterprises forward.

Jayne Groll DOES presentation will focus on the processes of DevOps and creating a “people pipeline.” Groll recognizes the difficulties put forward by the fact that we can’t automate people, but we can automate process. “We know that agile has its own set of values and its own set of concepts and its own set of vocabulary. Now in DevOps, we have new concepts and vocabulary and practices. Everyone is looking at, when we have a language barrier because we come from different silos and different cultures and different whatever, creating a ‘one IT’ is a little bit more of a challenge because you can’t write code for that. You need to focus on how you can bring this engagement together.” Because of this challenge, Groll’s presentation will focus on bridging the gap between vocabularies and processes and fueling DevOps success.

Favorite DevOps Pattern Than Ensures a Successful Journey

Thrasher spoke about the importance of redefining the processes for learning, especially when trying to make a large organizational shift like scaling a global enterprise for DevOps. “For me, this year, as we’ve been really scaling out the teams and trying to make it a corporate-wide standard, we’ve been focused a ton on the training aspect and changing the mindset that ‘I have to send a person to a week of training’ to coming up with more creative ways to build a growth organization and a culture of learning,” said Thrasher.

Underwood talked about how changing the physical location of teams during DevOps training can help achieve organizational buy-in and achieve a successful transition. “Bringing together all those different teams into a collaborative space,” Underwood said. “Getting people excited about the outcome is the biggest thing — getting people excited about what the potential outcome can be.” Underwood points to not only helping developers understand how big of an impact DevOps can have, but also giving them the tools and knowledge to be successful as keys to a successful journey.

Groll’s DevOps pattern she points to for success centers on creating dialogue and how DevOps has facilitated healthy dialogue across enterprises. “A few years ago the question was ‘Does DevOps apply to the enterprise?’ That question has been asked and answered,” said Groll. “What I think really in the last year I’ve seen is that despite the fact we may not have a great definition of DevOps – some think it’s more automation and some think more culture and the answer somewhere in between the two is the answer – I’ve seen a lot of dialogue in organizations where they’ll come in and say were talking about this now, we have developers and operation people talking about it and we have our senior managers talk about it. And I think, most importantly, we’re having some the middle managers started to kind of a overcome a little bit of that fear factor of ‘where do I fit in this?’ and we’re talking about it.” Groll points to this dialogue as a massively transformative change for organizations and the way they approach IT practices and policies.

For more on these topics and to hear from the rest of our speakers, you can watch the full episode here:

To learn more about the DevOps Enterprise Summit, or to purchase one of the last remaining passes, visit:

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