1) How would you describe the relationship between DevOps, Agile and ITIL?
DevOps and Agile: DevOps essentially promotes lean and agile principles to downstream stages of the software delivery pipeline. DevOps is a lot about agile operations and production integration. DevOps and ITIL: (1) In bi-modal IT, ITIL is more about mode 1 (cost efficiency, scale and scope economies, availability, risk mitigation) and DevOps is more about mode 2 (flexibility, agility, TTM) (2) Certain ITIL processes may well be applied to mode 2 services without conflicting with DevOps. For example there is nothing wrong with sound financial IT management or capacity planning and 1st line incident and problem management will not go away. Even Change Management and CABs are still useful: In a perfect world, mode 2 application changes are fully isolated, in reality cross-application and -infrastructure dependencies will still have to be resolved through meetings. However, some of the tools may change and a better integration with the DevOps (automation) tool chain is definitely an objective to smooth the path from development into production.
2) Can you describe what DevOps looks like when it’s ‘done’?
DevOps is a philosophy, not a standard or framework, so there is no "done" definition. However, a transformation could be called "done" (in the sense of "good enough") at a point in time, if business objectives in terms of agility requirements (idea-to-production, mean-time-to-repair) are met and additional benefits would not pay for further investments. It is also "done" at a point in time, if the bottleneck in the delivery pipeline shifts towards other (earlier) stages. "Done" today does not mean "done" tomorrow and cont. improvements, which are an inherent part of lean and agile, apply to DevOps either.
3) What do you think are the key metrics for DevOps?DevOps contributes to acceleration of idea-to-production and the related frequency of feedback cycles as well as to MTTR (mean-time-to-repair). "Repair" should be considered in a broader sense and relates to outages, functional and non-functional defects, usabability deficiencies, etc.. Consider however, that DevOps metrics relate only to a subpath of the complete delivery chain, from the development "done" to "available in production".
4) What attributes constitute a culture embracing DevOps?
DevOps culture =
- Agile culture
- Trust and Openness, avoid Blame
- Focus on effectiveness and customer value
- Willingness to learn and improve
5) Is Continuous Delivery the ultimate goal of DevOps? How do other ‘Continuouses’ (continuous deployment, testing, improvement etc) contribute in a DevOps transformation?
(1) Yes, Cont. Delivery is the ultimate goal. However, Cont. Delivery also depends on activities outside of DevOps. (2) DevOps promotes Cont. Deployment and Cont. Testing through its principles. Both are pre-requisites (necessary, not sufficient ones) for Cont. Delivery. (3) Cont. Improvement is generally part of a lean and agile cultu
About Michael: Michael Schmidt heads the Automic DevOps Practice, a Management and Technology Advisory Service established to help our customers to prepare for and transform their organizations towards DevOps. Michael spent his carrier as Consultant, Entrepreneur and in several product-related leadership positions. He has a passion for building lean IT organizations. Michael holds a joint MBA from New York University, London School of Economics and HEC Paris and a Master of Computing Science.
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