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10 success factors for the DevOps culture

For IT teams, accustomed to traditional methods of separate development and operation, DevOps can be a daunting reorientation. The silo structures, which have been established for years, hardly seem to break up.

DevOps strategies are closely tied to the aspiration to bring new products to market faster and faster. In addition, a collaborative and communication environment significantly improves workflows. However, the implementation of DevOps requires a corresponding culture in the company.

Every change in the company must start with the support of the management level. DevOps is originally a grassroots movement the desire of developers to automate and change the way they work together. However, management must enable this fundamental cultural change and, moreover, ensure that it is organized.

Ultimately, this means maintaining consensus between the departments, which exactly means DevOps for the entire company. The senior management now recognizes that it relies on DevOps for the company to compete. The problem, however, is that managers often do not know how to tackle it.

At the beginning of DevOps, the question arose: “We are the developers, how do we get the management on board?”. Today the management wonders, “We want to do DevOps, how do we get the developers on board?”. One of the mistakes that many companies make is the creation of a completely new position especially for DevOps, rather than effectively merging the existing departments and involving as many DevOps stakeholders as possible.

The human factor of DevOps

The biggest challenge is that people are reluctant to change, for fear of failing. The success of DevOps is based on creating a collaborative environment in which employees trust each other. Companies need to be lean and create a safe environment in which employees approach the business without fear and experimentation.

Every company is able to implement DevOps, but it can be difficult to convey the benefits of transforming everyone on board. The key to DevOps implementation is to establish the DevOps culture in the enterprise. Once this is done, skilled workers, mostly developers, are needed to drive implementation. These should bring the following ten skills:

  1. Soft skills understanding people and culture, as well as effective communication skills are crucial.
  2. Broad understanding of tools and technologies DevOps stakeholders need to be curious to constantly learn new things, ask questions that generate new ideas, and be open to new challenges.
  3. Safety training You must be able to protect applications from attacks.
  4. Experience with infrastructure automation tools for implementation at every level.
  5. Tests Test runs are required to drive automation.
  6. “Customer-first” mentality The ability to empathize, prioritize things and be transparent is the key to successful business relationships. DevOps stakeholders should not only look after the technical and organizational supply chain, but also the end result for the customer.
  7. Collaboration DevOps officers should be able to break up the work into small batches so that others can do it faster. They should show empathy to the entire team.
  8. Flexibility You should be multitasking-enabled and open to act on the principle of “risk and reward” because “everything is important” and “everything is urgent”.
  9. Network Awareness Network design must be planned and tested.
  10. Thinking in Big Pictures The needs and desires of multidisciplinary teams should be considered and meaningfully combined. Conflicts and constraints that go from one project to the next should be avoided.

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