The Importance of DevOps Team Structure

While breaking down silos is critical within the development and operations teams, it’s important to recognize that the principles of DevOps culture can be applied beyond the realm of IT. By extending the DevOps mindset to other areas of the organization, such as product management, marketing, and even human resources, businesses can foster a more collaborative, efficient, and agile environment. Building a DevOps culture requires a shift in mindset and organizational practices. By encouraging open communication and collaboration, fostering a blameless culture, focusing on customer needs, and prioritizing experimentation and innovation, organizations can create an environment where DevOps thrives. This will lead to increased efficiency, innovation, and a more collaborative working environment, ultimately transforming software delivery and collaboration within the organization. Teams entrenched in siloed ways of working can struggle with, or even be resistant to, overhauling team structures to embrace DevOps practices.

  • Some team members can be stronger at writing code while others may be more skilled at operating and managing infrastructure.
  • A competitive advantage can be gained by quickly releasing new features and repairing bugs.
  • This is one of the top DevOps Trends teams should follow; read the full blog to learn more.
  • Operations engineers are responsible for managing the infrastructure that supports an application, monitoring its performance, and collaborating with developers to optimize deployments.
  • Team members need to be alerted of failures in the deployment pipeline — whether systemic or due to failed tests — and receive timely updates on the health and performance of applications running in production.

In section 4.1, we examined the importance of leadership in promoting a DevOps culture and the necessity of fostering a learning mindset throughout the organization. As Jez Humble, co-author of “Continuous Delivery” (2010), asserts, “DevOps is about creating a culture of collaboration and shared responsibility for delivering value to customers.” A key aspect of implementing DevOps teams is introducing shared tools and processes to support collaboration and streamline workflows. One of the most significant barriers to the adoption of DevOps practices is the traditional separation of development and operations teams. These silos can lead to a lack of communication, collaboration, and shared goals, ultimately resulting in slower software delivery and lower quality.

Leadership in DevOps Team

In addition, the engineer is involved in team composition, project activities, defining and setting the processes for CI/CD pipelines and external interfaces. Making DevOps work in the long term takes commitment from everyone, not just developers and operations. Senior leadership will need to buy into this process before it can be implemented successfully. If you want continuous delivery or cross specific teams within an organization. They don’t set themselves up for success by first identifying their true needs ahead of time. The people who are in support roles should not be seen as “less than” but rather bring valuable insights into what is happening within your product development process.

devops organization structure

This section will explore the key roles and their respective responsibilities in a DevOps team. One of the most effective ways to break down silos is by creating cross-functional teams that include members from different disciplines, such as developers, operations, QA, and other stakeholders. According to a 2016 Puppet State of DevOps report, high-performing organizations with cross-functional teams are “2.2 times more likely to recommend their organization as a great place to work.”

Evaluate ChatOps tools and bots for the right fit

Choosing the right agile tools, educating stakeholders and assigning them specific roles, and collaborating with everyone using Kanban/Scrum boards is recommended. Right from the service desk to operations and development, everyone should be responsible and linked with tickets raised so that they are updated with the happenings in the infrastructure. By linking tickets to corresponding releases or changes, you can reduce errors and build apps faster. Secondly, the leadership should recognize skilled individuals and train them to become leaders with personal support, coaching, etc. Thirdly, decentralizing decision-making enables the team to share DevOps responsibilities across the board while allowing them to expedite processes. The leader should ideally be a role model, show integrity, create a trustworthy environment and inspire others to follow that path.

devops organization structure

The smallest DevOps team should comprise the following people; A software developer/tester, automation engineer/automation expert, quality assurance professional, security engineer, and release manager. The granularity of the team ultimately depends on the size of the organization. The Spotify Model fosters collaboration, autonomy, and a shared sense of purpose by enabling squads to work independently while still maintaining alignment with the organization’s broader goals. This unique structure allows for a high degree of flexibility and adaptability, making it an exemplary case study for organizations looking to adopt DevOps practices. Implementing shared tools and processes can enable visibility and collaboration across teams. In the “2015 State of DevOps Report,” researchers found that “organizations that use version control for both application and infrastructure code have 50 percent fewer failures.”

DevOps Team Structure and Best Practice

This separation of concerns and decoupled independent function allows for DevOps practices like continuous delivery and continuous integration. Automation is one of the most important DevOps practices because it enables teams to move much more quickly through the process of developing and deploying high-quality software. With automation the simple act of pushing code changes to a source code repository can trigger a build, test, and deployment process that significantly reduces the time these steps take.

Now virtual communication apps provide that same instantaneous communication. As such, each team works independently and does not belong to any other team. You need to customize your DevOps strategies looking at the cues offered by early adopters to fully leverage its benefits. The main goal of the team is to deliver higher performance, quickly recover from outages and fail less. As well, Ops will be responsible for generating and cultivating new solutions, aimed at reducing the development and deployment times and pass on that information to Devs. Deployment automation tools such as Terraform and Ansible may help with automating tasks.

On-demand running of tests via the CI pipeline

Over the long term, cracks start to appear, spreading from the blind spots into areas the team initially did well. Many low-performing teams were previously blinkered teams that were delivering well. You can only avoid these two extremes by adopting a position somewhere in the middle. You must find a mix of people who bring different skill combinations to the team. It’s a complex task as each person you add changes what you need from the next person. Beyond how fast your team ships, it should also consider team-health and technical quality metrics in their measures of success.

devops organization structure

The focus was teams that were able to quickly make informed decisions, what people in Agile might today call self-organizing teams. But defining the correct organizational structure is a little more difficult than explaining the role and makeup of the team. There are a lot of different ways to position DevOps within the organization, and what works in one environment doesn’t always fit the needs or culture of another. When a software team is on the path devops organization structure to practicing DevOps, it’s important to understand that different teams require different structures, depending on the greater context of the company and its appetite for change. The Ops team should bring extensible automation to operations so that regular tasks such as scaling the infrastructure, updating systems, or resolving issues can be done in a smarter way. It also brings consistency across the infrastructure and enables easy tracking of KPIs.

Developer experience metrics

In this team structure, there are still separate dev and ops teams, but there is now a “DevOps” team that sits between, as a facilitator of sorts. This is not necessarily a bad thing and Skelton stresses that this arrangement has some use cases. For example, if this is a temporary solution with the goal being to make dev and ops more cohesive in the future, it could be a good interim strategy. The 2015 State of DevOps Report from Puppet Labs describes the characteristics of a “generative culture” that can succeed in implementing DevOps.

devops organization structure

By gathering continuous feedback, teams can improve their processes and incorporate customer feedback to improve the next release. When security teams adopt a DevOps approach, security is an active and integrated part of the development process. DevOps aligns development and operations to optimize quality and delivery. The DevOps enthusiast must promote the advantages of DevOps to their team.

Different teams require different structures, depending on the broader context of the company.

In this post, we’ll take a closer look at the most popular and effective DevOps team structure best practices, so that you can better understand what’s working or not. Dockers also has the power to help simplify and standardize the deployment of software across an organization. This can be achieved through a variety of ways, such as using Docker Hub or other services. However, the best way of implementing DevOps organization structure by using an automated deployment pipeline. It can be set up for free, such as Jenkins or TFS Build Server (Team Foundation Service). Scaling DevOps across the organization also necessitates promoting a DevOps mindset throughout the company.

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