bright ideas

Two-speed DevOps - a powerful new approach

As I've been considering the role Service Management will play in the future of IT, I've been doing a lot of reading around DevOps in an effort to understand how adopting DevOps can significantly improve IT delivery. While DevOps core adoption is typically around web applications, it can also be used to improve the delivery experience on existing 'monolithic' legacy applications.

A key question that is still evolving in my understanding of this, is how IT architecture can play in this space and what the balance will be between traditional architecture approaches and micro services. This McKinsey article that popped into my inbox this morning starts to address this question for me and provides insight on developing a two-speed architectural approach.

As I was reading this article on the way to work this morning, I looked up from my seat on the bus and saw the synergies between what I was reading and the bus lane I was travelling on. The road to work represents the journey - we all want to get to our office as efficiently as possible. The standard roads become crammed with cars, roadworks, traffic lights, frustrated motorists ducking between lanes, and drivers taking risks causing accidents. When everyone is focused on their own objective, this causes inefficiencies in the entire process. Some days the trip is smooth and without issues, but other days the trip is a total nightmare.

The adoption of bus lanes has assisted with this experience by offering new rules to achieve the same objective. There is a dedicated road (process) created with new rules, allowing it to bypass all of the argy bargy on a standard road. Both approaches work in parallel with one being significantly quicker than the other - a two-speed approach.

And see that annoying person loitering at the side of the road with a camera? This is the governance ensuring everyone is compliant with the process and the rules, as breaking this will only hinder the two-speed approach.

I see this as a great analogy of how a two-speed DevOps approach can be adopted in your Delivery team. Some organisations like Netflix have created supercharged highways, but unless you are a startup web application business, then the starting position will be to get the basics embedded first.

DevOps is not new. It is premised on taking the key learnings of models to significantly streamline IT delivery. Leveraging core Service Management principles around process definition, cultural change and governance, is also a core component of this journey. Even if you have invested in the fastest Aston Martin, you will still only get to your destination at the same time as my family car, if you are confined to the slow lane.

At ViFX, we believe in the evolution of Service Management and think DevOps will naturally become the next key focus in delivering greater customer experiences. The successful adoption of DevOps will differ depending on each organisation's requirements and culture, but taking learnings from Service Management will assist with the approach.

What do you think? Let us know your thoughts below.

Philip Venables

Author: Philip Venables

Phil is the General Manager of the ViFX Service Management team, championing Enterprise Service Management solutions and services.

29 September 2015 / 0 Comments