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Making DevOps at scale stick

Our DevOps lead, Martin Croker, details four "enablers" that helped us get the job done.

DRIVING DEVOPS ADOPTION AT SCALE REMAINS A CHALLENGING PROPOSITION FOR MOST ORGANIZATIONS. HOW DOES A MASSIVE ORGANIZATION LIKE ACCENTURE, WITH MORE THAN 175,000 IT PROFESSIONALS DO IT?

TRAINING PAYS: UNDERSTANDING WHAT "GOOD" LOOKS LIKE

It might sound obvious, but training can be difficult to define—and hard to implement.

After an unsuccessful external search for trainers, we developed our own two-day training course to introduce our people to DevOps principles and technologies.

The primary objective was to build a critical mass of people who understand what “good” looks like in DevOps, what delivery entails and what benefits this provides.

This process generated a large (and growing) number of people who’ve seen DevOps in operation, can talk knowledgeably about it and recognize the bar for which they’re aiming.

GET EQUIPPED: GLUING TOGETHER THE BEST-OF-BREED TOOLSET

Giving people the best-of-breed tool set to deliver projects the DevOps way has been vital.

Our Accenture DevOps Platform played a pivotal role.

Originally developed as the lab environment for our training course, the DevOps Academy, we quickly realized that it could also be hugely valuable to support client work.

The platform enabled us to demonstrate (very persuasively) what can be achieved through DevOps.

Functionally, it’s a framework for gluing together a suite of open source development tools and providing a means to mobilize software development projects rapidly and in a consistent, standardized way.

CHANGE THE GAME: FOSTERING AN INCLUSIVE ENVIRONMENT

One factor helping our DevOps community thrive is the open-source, collaborative nature we strive to maintain in everything we do.

For example, all of the materials for our DevOps training course are on an internal wiki site. If someone doesn’t care for a particular procedure or description, they make their own edits.

This enabler is all about fostering an inclusive approach for individual technologists and for all the capabilities that we work with.

In addition to increasing capacity for our team, this fosters an environment in which, as co-owners and co-beneficiaries, our people are more likely to sponsor and support wider DevOps adoption.



MEASURE UP: CALCULATING ADOPTION AND TRACTION

We’ve introduced project delivery indexes to track how progress with adoption of DevOps practices.

This practice includes a maturity scale that we can standardize across the organization, and allows us to monitor projects across five or six dimensions (where a “1” ranking is poor, for example, and “5” is a leading practice).

Do we expect every project in Accenture to deliver to production 50 times a day? Probably not. Many of our clients aren’t ready for that.

Do we expect every one of our projects to have all of its source code and version control using DevOps? Absolutely.

Using this approach for measuring DevOps adoption gives us a quantitative view. We can track progress, understand where we’re doing well and identify projects that need extra help.


Contact

Martin Croker


Martin Croker

Managing Director
Accenture Technology, DevOps




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