Businesses are slowly limping back to work. As restrictions are being lifted, the restart of businesses around the globe has commenced. Many organisations, however, have not started working on their DevOps / Agile adoption journeys. They are still struggling to unlock the value from DevOps / Agile digital transformation initiatives.
DevOps / Agile ways of working involve a cultural change which extends far beyond automating software development and infrastructure services. Kuldip Sandhu and Shyam Valand presented the concepts and principles of Agile, BizDevSecOps, ITSM and how they are all inter-related. This will help C-level and change leaders to prepare, familiarise and prepare their organisations for their DevOps / Agile journey.
High Performing Agile Organisations
While C-level leaders appreciate the challenges regarding the rapid adoption of technology, even before the pandemic began, there is still a gap between the pace of technology change adoption and the pace at which organisations can absorb change. When the gap gets large, organisations typically have to reset. This requires them to embark on a transformation journey which can be quite radical. In order to cultivate a high-performing agile organisation through transformation requires six key pillars to align:
Ways of Working
Management & Leadership
Governance & Funding
You need to understand what your business strategy is and it to be clearly communicated and understood by all staff. There needs to be an underpinning organisational design and structure that breaks down silos with business values and principles embedded within the fabric of the organisation. Research shows that 70-80% of the workforce is predominantly disengaged. Ensuring that people are connected and motivated is a critical job for the management and leaders. The ambition and the incentives for all staff need to be clearly defined and understood and personal and professional paths aligned to business objectives. Appropriate levels of governance and funding are also critical for the success of the business programme and project portfolios.
Business & IT Agility
The ability to know what the business vision is and its trajectory provides a high degree of business agility, i.e. the ability to pivot to change direction when required to so in the face of adversity. Similarly, business and IT need to be aligned to deliver the products and services in an agile way. The pandemic has had a financial, human and social impact adversely. Still, it has also brought technology to the forefront. It has accelerated the pace of digital transformation such as cloud initiatives to provide technology cost savings and agility to provision infrastructure as a service at speed. Robotic process automation is another initiative that is being explored intensively. These are journeys that will make organisations more efficient and effective.
Digital transformation is about looking at your business model and how the products and services are being delivered to the shareholders and customers along with the value-add. Digital transformation can be defined as a business model reinvention while adopting technology at a pace to execute that differentiation. Covid-19 has accelerated the rate of change from a digital perspective. Thanks to social distancing, remote working has now become an urgent priority. IT departments have employed over 80% of the workforce in an agile way, learning and implementing at the same time. The rapid shift to online, hybrid events must be appreciated and applauded.
The 2008 financial crisis showed that the organisations that adapted quickly and invested in innovation, technology or otherwise, were the ones that succeeded in the long term. They not only survived to tell the tale but thrived to deliver successfully in their business strategies. Covid-19 has thus provided the IT world with an opportunity to enable the digital change. The eternal question of how you can design and implement a business model that enhances the customer experience in your industry to enable growth or aid efficiency must be answered through the enablement of technology. Differentiating your offerings to give you a competitive advantage and enhanced customer experience through technology is the mantra of digital transformation, as shown in the diagram below:
The New Digital World
With businesses moving to the online world, cybersecurity has also become a vital component for business continuity. IoT sensor technology has also become a key trend for capturing data and adapting to new digital transformation trends. Importantly IT departments need to be ready to deliver on digital transformation agendas aligned strategically to the business.
We had a poll during our webinar to understand the main drivers for the digital transformation in organisations. The choices were increasing competition, internal business needs, increasing the rate of innovation, reducing costs, increasing customer expectations, and increasing revenue. The results of the first webinar survey are shown below:
It is a fact that great customer service and revenue go hand in hand. If you improve customer service, you are more likely to increase business revenue opportunities.
Why “DevOps” should actually be called “BizDevSecOps”
What is DevOps?
DevOps is the practice of development and operations engineers participating together in the entire service life cycle from design through the development process to production/operational support.
Digital Transformation: Agility through BizDevSecOps
‘BizDevSecOps’ is about business and IT working together, in a collaborative manner, to deliver products and services to end-user clients effectively and efficiently by eliminating waste across value streams using agile work practices and adopting a culture of continuous improvement. This means that business leaders need to be actively involved in digital transformation to execute business plans by working across functional teams, including IT. They need to be agile in every sense of the word - technically and in reality.
Technically, agile can mean working with the business in developing a product backlog by using agile techniques such as SAFe, Kanban and/or SCRUM. Developing products and services in this manner provides visibility, reduces risk, increases transparency with continuous feedback loops to aid buy-in and alignment to business needs. This way of working aligns business with IT.
In IT, software development teams typically iteratively develop features and functions and then work closely with operations to release a product/service, so they are supported. Operations are typically focused on stability. DevOps, as a cultural movement brings them together, so each side understands the constraints and challenges from each other’s perspective. With stability, agility and features being in demand,
However, BizDevSecOps is the key as it brings everything together, i.e. business, development, security and operations. It glues up the value stream of a product and services in a horizontal way to reduce blockers and waste across functional groups and with IT, as shown in the diagram below:
In an enterprise, these cross-functional teams are all aligned towards specific value streams or products/services, and the constituents of the teams will be made up of different members from different parts of the organisation. These typically include data analysts, developers, enterprise architects, security analysts and operations staff who work together to deliver value within the product/service stream. They also ensure that the releases that go out of the door are done in a reliable, stable way within minimal defects, whilst meeting business needs. The requires sponsorship and staff to be incentivised in working collaborating in a cross-functional way, as shown in the cookie diagram below:
The Cookie Diagram
It is important for all the teams working in functional silos to come together while staying aligned to vertical business homes. Reducing waste and automation of workflow practices is a critical part of the digital optimisation journey. The goal is to build an agile organisation where the teams are synchronised around business value delivering products/services from optimised value streams. IT investments in continuous improvement are critical in enabling the successful optimisation of digital value streams.
The 6 Key Pillars of the BizDevSecOps Maturity Model
The 6 key pillars are shown in the diagram below:
Leadership / Strategy
The goal is to turn your organization from a chaotic disorganised/fragmented one to a digitally enabled business that is value-focused and outcome-based. Implementing a DevOps culture is critical to the success of such an agile transformation including removing waste, bring in effective processes, automating processes and creating a continuous improvement/continuous development (CI/CD) pipeline, sharing knowledge, measuring and having continual customer feedback loops all aligned to the business strategy/vision with the appropriate level of governance.
Going BizDevSecOps digital is like a journey rather than a destination to reach. Predicting and preparing the next level of Business / IT change is an iterative learning and undoing process. A seamless BizDevSecOps digital transformation requires a vision to convey “WHY,” a solid strategy to clarify “WHAT,” and a technical specification to articulate “HOW” you want to transform radically joining the business with IT development and operations whilst not neglecting the security aspects of delivering and providing value-adding business services to customers.
Please click here to view our webinar which covers the following key takeaways:
· Concepts and principles of Agile, DevOps and IT Service Management
· Why “DevOps” should actually be called “BizDevSecOps.”
· Why an organisational culture change is required to adopt these new ways of working in addition to Software Development and infrastructure automation
· Some real-world case studies detailing cutting edge approaches around IT Service Management process design, IT change management and Incident Management
Digital Transformation through BizDevSecOps means business and IT change, choice, innovation, speed, and people-centricity. Digital transformation is the gigantic puzzle with many misplaced pieces; you must put them all together to discover its true meaning and unleash its full potential. Connect with us to solve the puzzle.