Want to Get DevOps Right? Make Sure you Build the Right DevOps Teams

Organizations realize the power of technology to drive business value and develop strategic capabilities. As such the enterprise is becoming increasingly software-driven and software-enabled, most organizations look for DevOps specialists to navigate the tools infrastructure and get the customizations and automation in place. Here is why organizations need specialist teams with right compositions to effectively manage their DevOps assembly lines right from Design, Implementation, Automation all the way to support their DevOps instance. 

DevOps needs continuous improvement

The core of DevOps is continuous improvement. As such, DevOps not only needs a rethinking of the entire delivery process but also demands the right tools and technology infrastructure to support it. DevOps not only enables continuous improvement, but it needs continuous improvement as well. Given the accelerated pace of change, a proactive stance towards improving business operations efficiency and effectiveness is now almost a mandate. 

According to the Atlassian DevOps Trends Survey, 61% of the respondents agree that implementing DevOps has helped them produce higher quality deliverables in 2020 and 99% say that DevOps has had a positive impact on their organization.

However, Gartner predicts that over 90% of DevOps initiatives will fail to fully meet expectations through 2023.

This could be because to drive this continuous improvement, organizations need to add applications, improve processes, drive integrations, automation, custom development, etc. And identifying and making sure how everything fits in together and ensuring that all applications are thoroughly tested and implemented with the right integrations need specialized skills and continuous support. 

A plethora of skills that range from consultation to architecture design, development, and maintenance, to platform modernization abilities, and robust project management capabilities enable DevOps success. Along with this, there are migration, automation, training, and technical support requirements to address the growing needs of the business. 

The right team composition enables DevOps success

DevOps also needs dedicated teams and continuous support even after the initial implementation since the objective of DevOps is to drive continuous improvement. These teams need the right combination of talent and skills to navigate because each DevOps project is unique and has its own nuances. 

For example, all Atlassian-based DevOps teams for a large enterprise will need at least an Atlassian Support engineer, JIRA Implementor, Atlassian Developer, Automation Engineer, Team Lead & Solution Architect, and more such specialist skills. If you are hosting these Atlassian applications on a cloud platform like AWS then you add AWS Cloud Engineer to this team. If you have integrated hybrid CI / CD with tools like Jenkins, Sonar cube, Bitbucket, Artifactory, etc. we need to add a couple of CI / CD DevOps (Build & Release Engineers) to this team.    

In the absence of the exact specialized skills, DevOps teams will struggle for momentum and improved response time.  Unless there is the right skill and talent combination, each special need will demand a hunt for a specialist. 

In most cases, implementing DevOps will need access to these specialized skills at least a few times in the year, especially for enhancements requirements like integrations, custom development, automation, new technology adoption, etc. Wasting time looking for specialist suppliers to address special or specific needs or customizations impacts effectiveness, efficiency, and velocity and can add to lost opportunity cost. 

Build teams In-house or outsource?

While building DevOps teams, organizations either build them in-house, outsource them to generalist System Integrators or look for DevOps specialists. 

1. In-house teams often need specialist intervention because, 

  • There is a plethora of tools and technologies
  • Having a huge team with specialized skills in each technology is often prohibitive in terms of costs 
  • The frequency of enhancements such as custom developments, integrations, etc. needs fast responses to make sure that velocity is never compromised.

2. Generalist System Integrators struggle to provide good service because 

  • They don’t have all the required skill set in popular and widely used technology tools like Atlassian, AWS, and all DevOps CI/CD tools. 
  • They end up looking for specialist suppliers themselves and Enterprise clients have to pay a much higher sum while dealing with high response times. 

3. Specialists, on the other hand, can handle the continuous needs of DevOps and the entire ecosystem supporting it. They bring with them 

  • Capabilities such as maturity assessment & strategy planning. The shift-left mindset and the skills to enable this 
  • DevSecOps, CI / CD adoption & transformation
  • Development expertise and complete knowledge of the tools (Atlassian, Monday, etc), and technologies (AWS, cloud consulting, disaster recovery, managed cloud, hybrid cloud management, multi-cloud deployment, etc.). Infrastructure Automation, Everything-as-Code, Training & CoE Setup, etc. 
  • 24×7 Managed Support teams for DevOps pipelines & tool instances.

A proven track record with the right Atlassian, AWS partnership, high success rate, and complex delivery experience become pillars of success. Lean thinking and automation first approach optimize money, resources, and infrastructure to deliver maximum value. Armed with this, the specialists can deliver customized DevOps consulting that connects the three aspects of culture, process, and technology, seamlessly as per demand. 

So effectively you are building three teams – 

  1. Solutioning team containing Architects and Solution Designers
  2. Implementors containing Tools implementation & automation experts
  3. Tools Support Team with 8×5 or 24×7 or relevant support team to support your business users.

Some of our customers who ended up building such teams internally or with generalists have put on their roadmap and initiated transitioning these teams to specialists like us. They start with transitioning their 24×7 Support, then Implementation & Automation teams, and later even the Atlassian / DevOps Architecture teams.

Work with DevOps specialists if you want –

  • Faster time to market, better stakeholder visibility, better technical architecture
  • The ability to easily scale up or down according to business needs 
  • Better maintenance and support and business support
  • End-to-end DevOps management and reduced friction due to actionable real-time feedback hence better Customer Satisfaction. 

We are a team of highly experienced professionals who have built Managed Implementation and Support teams for many organizations to enable their above-mentioned Software Delivery goals. Talk to our experts!