DevOps and ITIL together?
Date 13 Oct 2018

This article intends to just provide a standpoint on how to consider DevOps initiative for organizations based on ITIL governance and traditional application development.

Gartner defines DevOps and ITIL as follows:

DevOps represents a change in IT culture, focusing on rapid IT service delivery through the adoption of agile, lean practices in the context of a system-oriented approach. DevOps emphasizes people (and culture), and seeks to improve collaboration between operations and development teams. DevOps implementations utilize technology — especially automation tools that can leverage an increasingly programmable and dynamic infrastructure from a life cycle perspective.

ITIL is an IT service management framework owned by Axelos — a joint venture between the U.K. government and Capita. ITIL is structured as five core books to cover the full-service life cycle: service strategy, service design, service transition, service operation and continual service improvement.

The DevOps initiative brings the promise of agility but at the same time brings also several concerns and the question: How to get started. There is no a standard definition for DevOps and this issue creates confusion for IT managers who are going to adopt this new approach.

The adoption of a simplified definition of DevOps helps to facilitate an easier and faster understanding of this philosophy, bringing developers and operations with a common goal for agility. Considering the business outcomes, the IT metrics that will support DevOps, and setting expectations for the initial objectives (people, infrastructures, processes, etc.) are also important to succeed.

Sometimes we can face the following question: I have ITIL well established in my company, what I have to do for DevOps?
The DevOps initiative can work with ITIL, and in fact, having ITIL methodology well implemented, rightsizing the ITIL processes for change and release configuration is the best move to take for a successful DevOps initiative.

At last but not least: a DevOps project considers Kanban technique for planning and communication for the development side, and taking Scrum sprint-based development first is also the best move to take.

We have to keep in mind that DevOps means transformation (culture, processes, etc). Assembling a great team, establishing the best processes, considering pilot processes first, involving security, infrastructure, architecture, functional areas, and customizing the implemented ITIL methodology are essential to be successful for DevOps.

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