• DevOps

Frequent and Short Iteration Releases – How to convince your CEO?

by Upendra Prakash, PMP, ITIL, Scaled Agile Consultant

The job of the project manager, who is trying to bring in the change by introducing new processes, tools and technologies is a difficult task, as it involves not just convincing the team that you manage but getting the buy-in from the management.

As a project manager, deployed in a project with one of our cutomer, managing a team of developers, testers, release manager, Infrastructure consultants, I faced the same challenge. The software platform that our customer builds has 3800 active customers, 14 versions of production releases, and needs weekly upgrades due to changing business requirements while the current releases are supported. I was successful in implementing SCRUM model for our development.

By attending some of the seminars on DevOps, I was fully convinced that is the best way for my customer organization to bring in the IT, Development, Testing and Operations team together. Understanding the benefits of DevOps: Speed of Delivery and Release Cycles, Reduce Defect density, Improve and Maintain Code Quality and Overall Product Quality, Quick turn-around for bug fixes and Operational Support, Good process and control across IT and development teams, and also bring in automation wherever possible, I decided to embrace the journey of DevOps for this product.

Convincing the team that I manage seemed to be easier task, but had it own challenges with the change management, the right tools that matches our requirements, tools that have shorter learning curves, smoother transition from Development to Deployment to Support cycles.

When I tried to explain the benefits of DevOps and to get the budgetary approvals for the new tools, I faced the tough resistance / challenge of convincing the management on the benefits of DevOps. While I very well understand the job of the CEO is to reduce cost of operations and increase the revenue and profitability, I had to justify the investment on DevOps and to prove that it would result in higher revenue and/or profitability.

Increase in Revenue & Profitability:

  • Frequent and Short Iteration Release Cycles (with new features of the product)
  • Increased Customer Satisfaction
  • Better Quality and Stability of Product
  • Faster Time-to-Market (compared to Competition)
  • Better Valuation and Brand Equity

Reduce Cost:

  • A stable, reliable IT infrastructure
  • Improved business efficiency
  • Higher Collaboration within Organization
  • Happier and Closely working Teams

There is no doubt that DevOps brings immense benefits to our organization, but each one of us in the Organization chain looks at them in different ways, depending on our role.

The same benefits of DevOps Automation with Frequent and Short Iteration Release cycles, when presented in a different form would get the required attention and support from the CEO and management. DevOps is not a one-time implementation of tool. It is a continuous improvement of People, Process and Tools. The benefits for the organization is immense in implementing and adapting DevOps.

The Author is the project manager with West Advanced Technologies Inc. and has worked with a counties and state governments in implementing Agile Methodologies, DevOps and Project Management Principles and Best Practices in many large projects.