Okay, I will admit, I’ve really waited to ask an executive of a large company this question, waiting for awhile. Why? Because if executives of billion dollar companies are articulating anything related to DevOps at this level, then what we all suspected is important is in fact also a huge consideration out in the world.
Kia agreed to field it, even took it personally.
Here we go.
Kia Behnia: Obviously, we [BMC Software] are a large development shop and we’ve adapted Agile development practices now for a number of years, and in doing so, what we found was the benefits it provides us, it allows us to deliver incremental updates to our software and make releases that are much more nimble and add functionality.
The challenge that we discovered is that while the development side of the house was getting all the benefits in terms of making the changes quicker, the delivery part — when it comes to both software for a customer, also for ourselves at our data center — there was a lot of process and lack of automation.
Quite frankly it takes a beautiful Agile developmental process and turns it into a Waterfall release. We started seeing this in the last two to three years, in customer organizations around their code as well.
And so, I think it is fair to say, that we have a universal set of problems in organizations of all sizes, whether you’re a coffee roasting company or whether you’re one of the largest software companies in the world. Typically you have not designed the release process with an agile mindset – typically, you’ve designed the release process with a more traditional Waterfall and slow process, lots of hand-offs and a lot of meetings and those type of things.
So, the movement around DevOps is really one that, in spirit, it’s around how do we design and redesign and reengineer that big inflection point between when the software is built hopefully in an Agile fashion — but it could also be in a Waterfall form — to when digital assets are actually deployed and leveraged by the users, the ultimate people who care about those apps.
How do we reduce the time? How do we compress the release cycle? How do we add automation and visibility that happens in a safe manner?