DevOps - It’s About How We Work

Jul 20, 2017 · Palo Alto, United States of America

DevOps is far more about culture and organization than it is about technology and tooling.  This talk will discuss the speaker's experiences leading high-performing engineering teams at Google, eBay, and Stitch Fix, and will offer suggestions for other organizations to level up their DevOps game.

Modern software-service models take advantage of the great benefits in having the same team both build the software as well as operate it in production -- "You Build It; You Run It" is the Amazon mantra.  What does this mean in practice? 

Organizationally, it means small teams with well-defined areas of responsibility, directly aligned with the business.  The teams are cross-functional, meaning that each team has all the skill sets it requires to do its job, while at the same time relying on other teams for supporting services, tools, and libraries.

Process-wise, it means doubling down on practices like test-driven development and continuous delivery. Using continuous delivery practices, high-performing teams can and do release their applications and services multiple times a day. This enables them to iterate rapidly, experiment courageously, and fail more quickly.

Culturally, it means end-to-end ownership.  Each team owns its software end-to-end, from design to development to deployment to retirement.  The same engineers who are responsible for the features are responsible for quality, performance, operations, and maintenance.  This ownership puts incentives in the right place to encourage building maintainable, observable, and operable systems from the start. 

All these techniques and approaches are available to everyone, and practical examples in this talk will help other organizations on their journey.


Randy Shoup

Randy is a 25-year veteran of Silicon Valley, and has worked as a senior technology leader and executive at companies ranging from small startups, to mid-sized places, to eBay and Google. Randy is currently VP Engineering at Stitch Fix in San Francisco.

Earlier, Randy was Chief Engineer at eBay for 6 1/2 years, where he was responsible for multiple generations of eBay's realtime search infrastructure.  He was CTO and co-founder of a startup, and learned just how difficult and different it is to build a company from scratch.  He was Director of Engineering at Google for Google App Engine, building and operating the world's largest platform-as-a-service.  He also spent a year and a half applying eBay and Google lessons consulting with startups and large enterprises on how to improve their organizations and technology.

He is particularly passionate about the nexus of culture, technology, and organization.


6:15 - 7:00 Early arrival recommended!
6:30 - 7:00 Registration / Checkin
6:30 - 7:00 Enjoy networking, along with wine, beer, soda, cheese, fruit, veggies and chips, courtesy of tonight's sponsor
7:00 - 7:10 Introduction and opening announcements
7:10 - 8:30 Keynote and Q&A
8:30 - 8:35 Closing announcements
8:35 - 8:45 Informal networking and followup Q&A
8:45 - 8:50 Clean up - please leave the room beautiful
8:50 - 9:00 Clear the room & have a safe trip home!


Ron Lichty has been managing and consulting in managing software development and product organizations for over 25 years at companies of all sizes. He launched Ron Lichty Consulting five years ago to mirror what he did as a manager: making software development hum. Ron’s book, Managing the Unmanageable: Rules, Tools, and Insights for Managing Software People and Teams, published by Addison Wesley, has been compared by many readers to programming classics The Mythical Man-Month and Peopleware. His Live Lessons: Managing Software People and Teams video training is available via O’Reilly’s Safari Bookshelf. Ron also co-authors the periodic Study of Product Team Performance.

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