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DevOps Transformation | @DevOpsSummit #APM #DX #Serverless #DevOps
While the benefits are many, the DevOps journey for an established organization can be filled with surprises and challenges
By: Aater Suleman
Sep. 13, 2017 06:30 AM
Seven Steps to Successful and Sustainable DevOps Transformation
While the benefits are many, the DevOps journey for an established organization can be a long one filled with surprises and challenges. To avoid as many of both as possible, learning from those who have gone before you can help you apply best practices to ensure a smoother path to success. As a result, in this article, I will outline the seven steps to a DevOps transformation as learned through working hands-on with more than 100 leading enterprise organizations to establish and sustain successful DevOps and IT modernization.
Step One: Exploration
The next step is to define your end business goal, i.e., know what you want to achieve from your DevOps transformation. Many organizations feel pressure to transform without a specific end-goal in mind. If this describes your business, I would encourage you to set aside your fear of missing out and instead inspect the following list of common business drivers to see which might benefit you most:
With a goal in mind, you will be able to examine the business impact ! both positive and negative - on potential technology decisions, which will act as a guiding principle. With answers to these questions in hand, you should then choose a pilot and build a roadmap.
Step Two: Choose a Pilot
When choosing an impactful pilot, the selection criteria for the pilot should tie into the motivation you have for deploying DevOps. For example, if your motivation is to reduce time-to-market, a project with a tight deadline that can't be met in a traditional framework will prove to be a good pilot. If your motivation is to improve security, a project that enables a previously unattainable security posture (e.g., PCI compliance) can make for a powerful pilot.
Once you have identified a set of candidate pilot applications that can be impactful in the right direction, the next step is to scope the pilot project such that it is small and attainable in a short period of time. While DevOps has many elements, it's not necessary to implement all of them in the pilot. In fact, our experience is that it is best not to implement more than three or four concepts in the pilot. Which concepts get priority should stem from the motivation you laid out in step one.
Following the selection of your pilot, you'll want to blueprint the desired state; out of which should come a detailed sprint plan for execution. With a blueprint and sprint plan in hand, teams can begin building their pilot DevOps architecture.
At Flux7 we have built an Enterprise DevOps Framework, or EDF, (seen here) which calls out the technology that should be included in every DevOps blueprint. Think of it as building an execution engine to operationalize your pilot - and future infrastructure.
This DevOps Framework differs from a traditional development and IT framework, calling on developers to accumulate everything needed for a service to execute, and the IT team responsible for assembling and managing service-agnostic landing zones for these services. Traditional tasks like QA are automated with Inspectors (automated tools to monitor services) and service information that may have been previously manually added is now automatically added via Injectors (e.g., secrets management).
Step Three: Design a Solution
A critical next step is tool rationalization. To implement the components from the EDF, we typically refer to the tools we call the 4Cs - Cloud, Containers, Configuration Management, and Continuous Integration/Delivery. Each of these ‘Cs' helps formulate the components in EDF, e.g., CI/CD of code is a part of pipelines. Cloud provides services that allow for the creation of a landing zone, automated infrastructure provisioning through infrastructure as code, and services to inspect the infrastructure. Containers provide a powerful way to package services in a service-agnostic manner and makes it easy to land them in a Landing Zone. With a strong foundation in these elements, teams will be able to begin extending their infrastructure and DevOps culture.
As an example, in its move to DevOps, Rent-A-Center initiated a pilot based around a partner ecommerce portal. Their motivation was to reduce time-to-market and maintenance costs. For it, they created an infrastructure that used the AWS Cloud to provide infrastructure as code, Docker for containers, Ansible for Config management, and Jenkins for CI/CD. This pilot has served as a template around which they have extended their DevOps technology, processes and team culture.
Step Four: Build COE
Moreover, the COE is responsible for teaching others in the organization how the new enterprise DevOps framework works. For example, equipping developers with the new knowledge to assemble everything they need to deliver a service - from code and configuration, to libraries and pipeline definitions.
Organizations that begin their COE with a small team of DevOps engineers are most successful. Take for example the case of Verifone, which needed to ensure development, was able to deliver high quality, secure solutions against tight deadlines. In its transformation, it built a COE from a small team of dedicated DevOps engineers who oversaw the unprecedented launch of a brand new line of business in less than one year due to its success in navigating the DevOps journey.
Step Five: CoE Summit
Step Six: COE Helps Dev and IT
A large manufacturing organization created a dedicated team, which it called the Cloud-Crafter Team, responsible for hand-holding development and IT in the initial sprints of its DevOps transformation. The team created a development factory based on self-service elements, such as a service catalog, from where development and IT could begin participating in the DevOps transformation.
Step Seven: Modernization
Having built a business case for DevOps within the organization, effectively piloting it and building a COE for knowledge transfer and ongoing learning and improvement, the organization has established the fundamental steps for ensuring a successful DevOps transformation. Now, this success can be scaled. Whether to new initiatives or other parts of the company, the organization has created a template for successful and sustainable DevOps transformation.
For established enterprises, DevOps transformation may seem daunting. However, organizations can adopt DevOps rapidly by following these seven steps. Effective assessment, solid pilots built on strong foundational technologies and a core COE that spearheads training and ongoing improvement is a time-tested formula for sustained success.
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DevOps at Cloud Expo / @ThingsExpo 2017 New York
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The widespread success of cloud computing is driving the DevOps revolution in enterprise IT. Now as never before, development teams must communicate and collaborate in a dynamic, 24/7/365 environment. There is no time to wait for long development cycles that produce software that is obsolete at launch. DevOps may be disruptive, but it is essential.
@DevOpsSummit will expand the DevOps community, enable a wide sharing of knowledge, and educate delegates and technology providers alike. Recent research has shown that DevOps dramatically reduces development time, the amount of enterprise IT professionals put out fires, and support time generally. Time spent on infrastructure development is significantly increased, and DevOps practitioners report more software releases and higher quality. Sponsors of @DevOpsSummit will benefit from unmatched branding, profile building and lead generation opportunities through:
For more information on sponsorship, exhibit, and keynote opportunities, contact Carmen Gonzalez by email at events (at) sys-con.com, or by phone 201 802-3021.
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For more information on sponsorship, exhibit, and keynote opportunities, contact Carmen Gonzalez (@GonzalezCarmen) today by email at events (at) sys-con.com, or by phone 201 802-3021.
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Track 1. FinTech
Delegates to Cloud Expo / @ThingsExpo will be able to attend 8 simultaneous, information-packed education tracks.
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