DevOps platform - collaboration

Over the last few weeks, we have been publishing a few articles about the Live DevOps Innovation Platform, and how we built it. But I’d like to take the opportunity to share some of the benefits that we, as Sandhata consultants, have seen – so far – as a result of building this new DevOps platform and the application Sandhata Bank.

A springboard for learning and internal enablement

When building the DevOps Innovation Platform and the application Sandhata Bank, we have utilised more than 30 different tools. Most of these tools are Open Source, but there are also a few enterprise-licensed tools in there. Many of them have been new to the consultants, so there has been a lot of quick learning and experimentation. The consultants have enthusiastically embraced this, and enjoyed the opportunities for learning and development.

Closer working relationships and stronger team spirit

As soon as we started building the DevOps platform, we pounced on all consultants to join the team as soon as they came onto the bench. This meant that the DevOps Innovation Platform team ended up spanning our three main offices (one in the UK and two in India). Thanks to the close daily interaction working on this project, the team has really bonded and have a stronger relationship than before.
This was helped by the daily stand-up meetings, as well as the partner pairing which we did for a few of the work tasks. Working so closely together has also increased the opportunity for cross-skilling, and knowledge has been shared more effectively than before.

In-depth focus on DevOps collaboration

This DevOps platform has given us the drive and opportunity to use some of the latest cutting-edge collaboration tools, away from any client restraints. We started out using Phabricator to manage our work tasks, and we have since progressed onto Rally. Using Rally daily to manage the entire work stack and individual workloads has given the consultants hands-on experience of both of these aspects.
As this has been an entirely internal project with a very flat management structure, it has also given every consultant the chance to have their say in how the tools are being used to provide the most value in the project. This type of opportunity never comes up at client sites, because you need to fit in with existing toolsets and processes.

Freedom for the consultants

This is a platform where all new ideas are welcome! If a consultant is interested in implementing a particular new feature or technology, then they have a framework to use for R&D. If a tool seems to solve a particular use case, then they can integrate that tool into the DevOps Innovation Platform and work on it.
There has been a great deal of opportunity to have a say in the design of the platform as well as the application.

Consultants have worked on a wide range of tasks, broadening their knowledge and understanding of DevOps holistically in a way that no training can.

 

A scratch area for testing new tools and processes

The DevOps Innovation Platform is a fully-featured and multi-environment platform, designed for testing new tools, processes and ideas. It provides a framework which can be used to quickly and easily test a new plugin or product, without any overhead in standing up and configuring a new dedicated environment. For consultants at client sites, it is also a useful area for troubleshooting. If they encounter a particular problem at client site and want to recreate it, or perhaps just test out possible solutions or tools, they can do that on the Innovation Platform rather than having to use the client’s environments with its potential restrictions.

Great Use of Bench Time

Building the DevOps platform coincided with a few of our senior resources coming onto the bench for a few weeks. This gave us a really great opportunity to invest some time into researching, designing and building the platform while we had the bandwidth to do so. We were able to capitalise on the experience and knowledge of some of our more senior people, to build the best platform possible. (Some of our consultants have even looked forward to coming onto the bench, so they could get involved with the platform!)

I personally believe that the DevOps Innovation Platform is a great addition to our DevOps capabilities. It has also provided a really diverse work stack for many of our consultants over the past few months. You will never be bored with the DevOps Innovation Platform at your fingertips!

 

Want to know more?

Take a look at the Platform page or contact us on +44 20 7680 7105 for a no-obligation product review.

 

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Bronwyn Davies

Bronwyn Davies is Head of DevOps at Sandhata Technologies. She brings more than 9 years' experience in application development to help clients achieve their DevOps ambitions. With in-depth understanding of the financial industry, she is able to draw on her experiences and knowledge to provide best practise guidance and practical tips to organisations looking to reinvent their application development processes.