Some important caveats to the DevOps in large enterprises question
Great post Andi,
As usually it's very well written with great supporting info. I tend to agree with the majority of your comments as they pertain to the article by Rachel Shannon-Solomon from the WSJ.
However, I would like to add some caveats that don't often make the headlines in regards to DevOps implementations.
DevOps is as much an organizational movement as it is a technology strategy. The fact that many enterprises are silo'd and would struggle to adopt is true, but doesn't change the fact that it's still the right approach. Many enterprises struggled with the idea of virtualization, and then Cloud and the issues of adoption are similar.
There is no doubt that a small company with little or no structure has the best opportunity to implement DevOps quickly and effectively by the very fact that they are in effect "green field" environments. Virtually any IT solution is easier to implement when you can start with a green field approach.
As I see it there are a number of assumed benefits associated with DevOps. Most commonly called out as a benefit is agility. There's no doubt that agility is a key opportunity, but not all businesses will benefit equally. I prefer to look at DevOps from the framework of the "ops" part. As systems become ever more complex and our environments are more hybrid (data centers, cloud, services, distributed apps, etc), the need to provide guarantees on policy and change management through the lifecycle of test to RTP (release to production) becomes even more critical. The potential of properly implemented DevOps is that policy, governance, and risk associated with change are all captured and managed the same way, every time. Attempting to speed broken, human oriented processes that most of us use today is a dangerous proposition.
Will it be easy for larger businesses to implement DevOps, no, but since they already need to consider different org models to "own" cloud properly, they might as well suck it up and do it right.