Lean-Agile and Automation Encapsulated

By Jaco Viljoen, agile consultant at IndigoCube

The trick to successfully digitalising your business is to create a balance in the DevOps teams to eliminate the seesaw pendulum that results from the turf war each half silently wages.

Developers want new things while operations people want the stability of tradition.

To align those apparently diametrically opposed goals DevOps must be a philosophy that embraces collaborative culture, continuousness, and automation.

That’s a mouthful so I’ll break it down quickly.

The Philosophy of Three

By philosophy I mean how you think, your morals, values, principles, your view of the world, the way things ought to be done, and it’s often what we mean when we say: “We should all be on the same page,” or “pulling together.”

Collaboration’s the obvious getting developers and operations to work together.

Continuousness is the automation that eliminates manual, error-prone human activities to help deliver smaller, iterative projects that deliver immediate functionality as opposed to large, cumbersome projects that take eons to get into the trenches.

But just pulling together can be a challenge. Sometimes the developers are in the lead. Sometimes the ops guys and you’re either progressing or stabilising. The trick is to replace that pendulum with equal lifting on both sides of the pivot so it becomes a lift.

Lean-agile and Automation

How you do that is to encapsulate lean-agile (as a means of gaining the right systems, quickly) and automation (as a means of employing those systems to the benefit of your workforce and your customers). Lean-agile developer operations integrated with automation results in a DevOps methodology that brings agile into the DevOps movement instead of excluding it.

What we get is replacing the seesaw of who wins today with a lift that sees both sides gain every day. It’s possible when each team gets what they want and need through lean-agile and automation. Breaking down the barriers between the two sides, the silos that separate them, gets them pulling toward the same business goal, which is to satisfy customers.

One benefit is the highly prized business agility. The second is speed to market. And being agile means gaining the ability to pivot when your radar spots a new threat. Speed to market means getting there in the six months or less it’ll take your nimble competitor.

Digitalisation is an on going programme of incremental improvement rather than a forklift affair so, unless you strategically align the developers and operations people, you’ll always have them at odds with one another but collectively undermining your effort.

Please feel free to e-mail me if you’d like to know a little more about how you can successfully align DevOps in your business.