Tactics for Transformation in a Less Than Optimal Organization
In a previous resource, Thinking Environments, the authors describe four organizational models, and the benefits and drawbacks of each model with respect to DevOps. They recommend moving away from a matrixed organization to overcome the drawbacks for DevOps teams.
However, in some cases, especially large traditional organizations, there are good reasons for not moving away from a matrixed organization. This resource focuses on the problem of organizations that can’t or won’t move away from a matrixed organization. In particular, we focus on those matrixed organizations in which, functional (vertical) organization is responsible for defining and measuring the process, and the programs/projects (horizontal) are responsible for program execution.
“In large organizations it is not always possible to change the organization to support your DevOps initiatives. That does not mean you can’t take advantage of the benefits that DevOps will provide. It just means you need to modify your approach and require the silos to take a more system wide perspective.”
“Every organization has a value stream, but only organizations with processes under control have repeatable, standardized delivery pipelines. (If your process is ad-hoc, your delivery pipelines are always one-offs).”
“Within a matrixed organization each functional structure defines and owns the processes for the functional area they lead. This creates processes that are often optimized for the functional area but not necessarily optimized for regular delivery of business value."
“Eliminating or reducing the impact of handoffs is key to improving flow and, in turn, improving time to market and quality. The fewer hand-offs we can have, the better. This is why so many examples of DevOps success stories feature small, integrated, cross-functional teams where most, if not all, of the necessary work to deliver and operate a service stays within the boundaries of a single team."
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