Jez Humble, co-author of seminal DevOps books The DevOps Handbook, Lean Enterprise, and Continuous Delivery, gave a keynote speech at the Jenkins World conference in San Francisco last Thursday. He emphasized that an organization's adoption of DevOps should be a true transformation—of the culture as much as the architecture. In a breakout session later that day, he also provided software industry leadership with a roadmap for navigating this transformation.
An organization's culture should allow for the freedom to fail, as Humble argued. Otherwise, innovation suffers. Old architecture should be incrementally overtaken by new architecture, he said, illustrating the idea with an image of nature slowly strangling an abandoned building. Organizations should begin by delivering new functionality, at least at first. Existing functionality shouldn't be rewritten, except to simplify.
6 Steps to Survive a DevOps Transformation
Agree and communicate measurable business goals.
Give teams support and resources to experiment.
Talk to other teams. DevOps is everyone's problem.
Achieve quick wins and share learnings.
DevOps is a philosophy—a way of thinking about solving problems, Humble told the afternoon breakout session for leadership. The people you need to succeed already work at your company. A DevOps transformation does not mean firing sysadmins and testers and hiring DevOps people—it's about changing people's behavior across the organization. DevOps is about learning to work in small batches, whether you're talking about product development or organizational change.
The slides from some of Jez Humble's most recent conference presentations can be found here.