Time for IT to Hang Together on DevOps

    One of the reasons that the divide between developers and IT operations team — otherwise known as the “DevOps crisis” — has been allowed to spin so far out of control is that nobody is really in charge of anything called DevOps. In fact, you can hardly find anybody with any kind of title that involves the phrase “DevOps.”

    What you do find are people with titles such as “release manager” sitting in both the application development and IT operations teams. In theory at least, there is supposed to be some sort of hand-off between these people as new applications and updates flow from the application development team into production. Given all the hoopla about the DevOps crisis in the wake of the rise of agile application development methodologies, clearly the application release ball is getting dropped.

    To prevent that ball from being dropped, the folks at Serena Software are making the case for a federated framework that essentially helps release managers on both sides to not only get their jobs done, but also see what’s happening on the other side without having to ask anything of anyone. Rather than force people to collaborate, the Serena approach, says Dave Hurwitz, senior vice president of worldwide marketing for Serena Software, solves the communications crisis between the two teams so that everyone stays out of each other’s way.


    To that end, Serena Software this week at its xChange 12 user conference launched an update to its Orchestrated IT framework for managing enterprise IT that, among other things, adds the ability to access the framework from mobile computing devices, send alerts via a built-in social networking capability and to provision services in the cloud.

    While both sides of this ongoing IT feud have been investing in any number of tools to address the problem, Hurwitz argues the problem won’t ever really go away until both developers and IT operations teams are using the same framework to manage processes. In fact, in the absence of such a framework, IT organizations wind up investing in tools that have redundant functions, says Hurwitz.

    Obviously, DevOps is more of a process issue than a technology issue, but arguably it’s hard to change a process when everybody is working with different tools. What is for certain is that the business is getting tired of what they perceive to be an internal IT squabble, so in the immortal words of Ben Franklin, maybe the time has come to finally hang together before someone on the business side decides to hang everybody separately.

    Mike Vizard
    Mike Vizard
    Michael Vizard is a seasoned IT journalist, with nearly 30 years of experience writing and editing about enterprise IT issues. He is a contributor to publications including Programmableweb, IT Business Edge, CIOinsight and UBM Tech. He formerly was editorial director for Ziff-Davis Enterprise, where he launched the company’s custom content division, and has also served as editor in chief for CRN and InfoWorld. He also has held editorial positions at PC Week, Computerworld and Digital Review.

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