Maturation Called One Key to DevOps Methodology

Successfully implementing DevOps methodology requires a maturation process and cultural shift for organizations, experts from the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), Internal Revenue Service (IRS), and Department of Homeland Security (DHS) advised today.

Rob Hill, an IRS Executive Officer, said at an Advanced Technology Academic Research Center (ATARC) event today that there isn’t a one-size-fits all change to adopting DevOps tools and techniques, but that both policy change and cultural change go hand-in-hand. He likened the relationship to a chicken-and-egg situation.

Hill also made mention of an IRS mantra of sorts when it comes to upgrading workforce to reflect DevOps strategies: people, process, and technology. But among those, people always come first and they’re what make DevOps the conduit for modernization, he said.

To upgrade the workforce, agencies should be prepared to bring in new people to retrain staff, whether that’s from the private or public sector, said OMB Mission Operations Lead Bill Hunt. Current staff must be willing participants in further training in order to affect the culture, he added.

Eric Jeanmaire, Chief of the Identity, Records and National Security Delivery Division at DHS, added two more caveats to successfully implementing DevOps methodology:

  • Along with Federal agency buy-in, business partners in the field should be willing to embrace the maturation process, and doing so will increases efficiency in DevOps projects; and
  • Security should be embedded into projects along the way, and not added after the fact.

Working with business partners that embrace DevOps processes increases speed, and embedding security in the initial stages allows it to become part of a solution and not extra work that stalls progress, he said.

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