Three DevOps tips to get your trains rolling

Here are three DevOps tips that might help you satisfy your business owners and speed up the delivery of value from your Agile Release Trains, starting with the easiest one.

1. Put focus on lead time

Start measuring the time it takes for each feature to reach your customers. Shifting the focus from utilization to how long your business owners have to wait to get value from features puts more attention to things that stop the value from being delivered. Specifically, the part of the lead time where features are waiting is devastating. Doing fewer things simultaneously with shorter lead time will increase your business owners’ feeling of value being delivered. Speed up delivery by doing less is your strategy, but If the art is unable to deliver with short lead time, doing less will simply mean delivering less.

Tools to use:
Value stream mapping
CFD diagrams
Program board visualization

Lead time improvements devops

2. Increase knowledge and craftsmanship

When cross-functional Agile teams are formed in the arts, complexity and responsibility in those teams increases. A team that used to be developers only, may now also have quality, delivery and production responsibilities. Make sure you provide the teams with the shared skills and knowledge they need to master their new situation. The teams are the engines of the train, boosting performance in them will speed up what it delivers.

Tools to use:
Mob programming
eXtreme Programming rules
Software engineering education
DevOps education

Increase knowledge and craftsmanship

3. Continuously integrate

Make sure to conduct demos and other regular inter-team activities based on integrated solutions. Avoiding divergation by continuous integration helps avoid that painful last period where everything needs to be reassembled at the end of an increment. Having an integrated solution gives confidence that the progress is real and that there will be no unpleasant surprises causing late delays and unhappy business owners.

Tools to use:
System team
Architect for delivery
Architects education
DevOps education

Continuously integrate

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