By Dick Stark
Last week bmc emailed its customer base a Gartner Reprint entitled, DevOps is the Bimodal Bridge. Like ITIL of ten years ago, DevOps is starting to get a lot of attention and Gartner customers are asking what to do with DevOps. The Gartner authors, Cameron Haight and George Spafford (co-author of the Phoenix Project), explain that DevOps is actually a bridge between the two IT bimodal approaches.
I googled bimodal IT and discovered that Gartner defines it as, “The practice of managing two separate, coherent modes of IT delivery, one focused on stability and the other on agility. Mode 1 is traditional and sequential, emphasizing safety and accuracy. Mode 2 is exploratory and nonlinear, emphasizing agility and speed.” Organizations like FaceBook, known for rapid and agile development fall into the Mode 2 camp, while more traditional “ITIL” or “Waterfall” based development shops are Mode 1.
Interestingly, the Gartner reprint predicted that by 2020, at least 80% of the practices identified with DevOps and Mode 2 will be adopted by traditional Mode 1 groups, up from less than 10% today. This is an amazing prediction that really highlights the growth of DevOps in the coming months and years. Of course, DevOps is the “bridge to Mode 2” by assisting the more traditional organization to adopt practices and processes of DevOps.
This is why HDI, Pink Elephant, and the ITSMF conferences all have DevOps tracks and why those sessions are so crowded. I’m reminded of the interest in ITIL from 10 years ago and the surprise when users discovered that ITIL was a framework only, and the actual implementation was left mostly up to the practitioner. Of course, ITSM tool set vendors built “ITIL in a box,” (and achieved ITIL toolset certifications) by converting that framework into a prescriptive process, e.g., bmc Service Management Process Module (SMPM). DevOps implementations however, vary widely since there are no general prescribed patterns and practices.
A good example of this is change management. Common feedback from organizations that have implemented a formal change process, along with a new toolset is that the new change process is bulky, cumbersome and slow. While formal change process may prevent outages caused by rogue developers, it does little to improve speed and agility. As a result, DevOps has emerged as a quick fix to the “Mode 1 blues.” The Gartner report recommends more preapproved changes and automation wherever possible. In some cases, traditional CABs are not required, due to the time lag for approvals. Gartner also recommended to “pre-approve low risk standard changes.”
The good news is that RightStar already sells DevOps advisory services and the Atlassian toolset to Mode 2 organizations. Atlassian offers solutions for team success: collaboration, project transparency, better workflow, and improved communication–by using products such as JIRA, Bitbucket, and Confluence. This means that the combination of DevOps processes and Atlassian DevOps toolsets can provide a bridge for Mode 1 organizations moving to Mode 2. RightStar, too, is the bimodal bridge to Mode 2.