DevOps: Are you wasting time?
DevOps, for those who do not know, is basically an organization telling all of its departments (people) to play nice with the other departments (who they have never really liked) for the sake of company’s goals. It is also being touted as a software development method that aims to engender superior collaboration between the software development team, the testing team, the release team, the application maintenance team and the infrastructure folks. Tall order, you say? It certainly is. In this interview, Jen Krieger says that nearly all of the efforts to implement DevOps in an organization are expended on making a cultural change and only about 10% on technology. I think she couldn’t have said it any better.
But this problem is for those who want to implement DevOps. Most people, who we talk to, want to know what is DevOps and how does this help? Let us try to answer this with some case studies.
If you are a software development shop let’s say that is working on releasing mobile apps, then yes, DevOps should be your middle name. Let’s be honest – if you have read this far, you are probably an IT person of some sort. If you think releasing new features twice a day is really cool, it is also quite likely you think the business should roll over on your say so. Sorry to say, but that’s not how businesses work.
On the other hand, you belong to the majority category of businesses if your company is manufacturing shop, a distribution or a retail company, or in the travel or hospitality industry, in advertising and media, banking or in the energy or utility business. Your business is far more interested in old fashion ideas such as profitability and market share and less interested in releasing new application features to see what interests your customers. Unless IT can show that somehow there is a direct improvement to a company’s profitability because of releasing new features, directly or indirectly, this is a failed idea.
Given many companies have some level of outsourcing of various services today it is becoming quite evident that most businesses believe that IT is a huge cost center. And when there are too many people and service providers clamoring for attention, their value propositions all appear identical and hence a commodity. New initiatives from IT should either reduce costs or show noticeable or attributable improvement towards profitability. Does DevOps make the cut for your business? If you answer yes, then please read Jen’s interview and see if you want that pain.
For the rest of you, IT has to be simple, elegant, preferably costs less. And how about making it easy to consume and remove all the complexity? What if you don’t have to commit to a fixed IT spend and instead can spend only as much as you need? Outsourcing uses “labor arbitrage” or “scale of operations” as tools to optimize your IT costs. How about fundamentally changing how IT should operate? Is it worth your time to head back to the drawing board? If you don’t believe it is time, here is a test. If you are in any of business sectors mentioned in the fourth paragraph, try hearing what your CEO thinks about how soon does (s)he want DevOps implemented.
Drop us a line and let us know if you are ready to transform and understand how to operate IT in a fundamentally different way that gets you the benefits, some of which are mentioned above.