Re: Revenue v Expenses
Joe, thanks for your comment. It is a good perspective to the conversation. We must never ignore the revenue and expense implication sof technology. IT exists to help the business make money, after all, and a DevOps initiative is not going to be free. Even the open source software that is often cited at the center of DevOps is not without associated costs.
However, from an expense perspective, the benefit is not just through layoffs. Reducing thrash, reducing errors and defects, reducing tool costs all contribute to bottom line benefits. Moreover, there are top-line results as well. As the research linked in my article says, DevOps is also associated with increase in revenue, new products that could not have been made available before, penetration into new markets and attraction of new customers.
In any case, in my experience, most IT orgs have more than enough to do, so improving output through DevOps (or automation in general) mostly results in more projects being moved into and through the queue, rather than staff being laid off. Throughout the history of automation, this has been true; although it is also true that automation has allowed organizations to reduce their staffing when that was already on the cards e.g. because of other financial pressures. As we head out of the recession, rather than into one, I don't see layoffs as a big issue.
Also, there is no conflict between a Devops approach and using public cloud. Indeed, they often go together very well. As you say, that is where agility comes from. I advocate enterprises look to both, whether separately or hand-in-hand, for best results.