DevOps & Organizational Cultural Change

Overview

DevOps mandates Change in Culture within an organization.

What Cultural Change?

DevOps literally automates the end-to-end software development cycle. However, with this automation, the whole world changes for the IT teams, esp. its relationship and expectations with Business owners / Operations & management.

Phase: Solutioning, Budgeting, and Project initiation

Not many changes in the solutioning phase due to the introduction of DevOps and hence we are going to skip this for the purpose of this article.

Phase: Requirements & Design

Post “Solutioning” — which I personally consider absolutely crucial, re-emphasizing the need for good Architects — requirements capture and requirements enunciation into High-level designs (HLDs) / Low-level designs (LLDs) is no longer considered a mandatory step.

Phase: Development

Typically, given a requirement (in this case a backlog entry), most Developers will start coding immediately, with minimal or no thinking time spent on identifying dependencies / or impact / or deployment strategy / or overall modularity/ or how this code fits in the big picture of Business/ or even co-developer’s codebase, esp. when it comes to complex topics for e.g. Usability by target audience (read — culture, languages, currencies, cultural expectations, history) / workflows/ dependency from existing system integrations, performance improvements e.g. Caching, Shared data models, reference data lookups, configuration management, service models, reuse of existing codebase/solutions, third party libraries/tools previously used in the organization (aka org tech history), the impact of existing technical debt, etc.

Phase: (Automated) Testing

This phase relies on automated testing to be defined as part of the development, which will then lead to fully automated testing. In a purist world (read — Test-driven development / TDD), every line of code has to have at least one test case, which will ensure the automated regression testing will be successful on every code commit, leading to a fail-fast model. If they miss the use cases, it is to be captured by the peer review process, pointing it out. So far so good.

Phase: Deployment & Releases

This is the most stable part of the DevOps, which typically doesn’t rely on Developers, but on a fully automated system often developed and maintained by a platform team. Use of DevOps tools and capabilities for configuration management support developers to enjoy — fully automated triggered deployments (for Development environment), and manually triggered — but automated further for higher environments (UAT / PROD).

Change in Management and Ops Expectations

Lets look at the impact of DevOps on expectations by Management or Ops.

Summary

DevOps implementation — though a IT-only change — results in change to Culture across the entire organization (and not just IT). There are tangible and evident benefits to the business and its relationship with IT, leading to a more successful and digitized business.

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D Kuruppath

D Kuruppath

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Passioniate Deep Tech bunch — focussing on Infra, DevOps, Microservices, Cloud and Integration. Connect with us for our services.