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DevOps, Three Core Principles

Do you understand the core principles that underpin the DevOps philosophy? This blog discusses the three core principles.
DevOps name built from little yellow blocks on the navy background.

If you were to ask 100 people what DevOps was, you would probably get 100 different answers. If you Google ‘DevOps’, you get 20,800,000 search returns. Even the overview of DevOps on Wikipedia is suitably vague:

“…DevOps promotes a set of processes and methods for thinking about communication and collaboration – between departments of development, QA (quality assurance), and IT operations. In some organizations, this collaboration involves embedding IT operations specialists within software development teams, thus forming a cross-functional team – this may also be combined with matrix management.” 

You will probably pick out the terms ‘thinking’, ‘some’ and ‘may’, and wondering how something that seems so vague and poorly defined, be useful for my company.

Don’t be fooled, the lack of real definition, is a strength of DevOps, and makes it one of the most revolutionary trends in IT for a long time.

Just like the service delivery lifecycle, IT service management, and IT project management frameworks, no single solution fits every company, each company works slightly differently and adopts ways of work that are specific to its business. Often these frameworks are adopted too rigidly and to the detriment of the business.

DevOps isn’t a framework or a methodology, it’s a philosophy, all about an IT department, development and operations, working together, collaboratively, to efficiently provide the business with the best possible product and service.

An understanding of what DevOps is, and the benefits that its adoption can bring to an IT department, is critical for any modern IT leader.

As Gene Kim, the godfather of DevOps, tells us:

the reason everybody is so interested in DevOps is that it solves a problem that we have all experienced in our careers, which is how do we simultaneously enable the fast flow of features from delivery through test and operations while preserving world class reliability, stability, and security.” 

We talk about DevOps being a philosophy, rather than a methodology or framework, but it is underpinned by three core principles, or ways:

The First Way:

Systems Flow From Left To Right, accelerating flow as you go from left to right, Dev to Ops, in the value stream. This places an emphasis on the performance of the system as a whole, as a business value stream enabled by IT, rather than the performance of a specific team.

The Second Way:

Amplify Feedback Loops, create effective feedback from Ops back to Dev so that when something goes wrong you can either prevent it or detect it more quickly. This provides better understanding and responsiveness to all customers, and embed knowledge where needed.

The Third Way:

Culture of Continual Experimentation and Learning, using the notions of high trust culture, where organisations can learn and turn local improvement into global solutions. This leads to the allocation of time for the improvement of daily work, reward and regnition of the team for taking risks, and the introduction of faults into the system to increase resilience.

What is DevOps

DevOps is a philosophical shift that requires buy-in from everyone to truly succeed, and it’s only through adoption and adherence to these three ways, that a business can fully realise the benefits of a DevOps approach.

If you would like to find out how iCore can help you with your DevOps implementation then please contact us on 0207 868 2405 or email info@icore-ltd.com