Defining an Agile Team Structure Wrike Agile Guide

Also, when each team member can perform every job, it increases understanding and bonding between them.In DevOps, development teams and operational teams are separate. So, communication is quite complex.CommunicationScrum is most common methods of implementing Agile software development. Daily scrum meeting is carried out.DevOps communications involve specs and design documents. However, it can hurt when you’re trying to turn things over to another team for deployment.In the DevOps, process documentation is foremost because it will send the software to the operational team for deployment.

agile devops team structure

As such, security has to be incorporated in the planning stage of development. With infrastructure as code increasingly gaining momentum, the thin line between development and operations is quickly waning off. The current DevOps team structure contains people who are skilled in coding and operations. Strong communication skills, technical expertise, and team player mentality are important traits for a DevOps guy.

DevOps Engineer vs Full Stack Developer: Differences

Create a hiring strategy based on industry trends, technological analysis, and business requirements. Prepare a structured process management system with a streamlined interview process and onboard mechanisms, and execute it to hire the right people for the right jobs, at the right time. In a DevOps environment, automating security rules is important too.

agile devops team structure

When the leader is “new” or “unknown” and the team is composes of outsiders, the ANTI- part of the pattern is a certain outcome. Find more DevOps team topologies at devopstopologies.comThe new version has many new topologies that we’ve encountered in the wild and we’re taking pull requests on Github for additions and changes. Even if the pipelines are separately maintained for each team, there is a strong advantage to have one team that understands the pipeline tools, tracks upgrades, and sees how new tools can be added.

Characteristics of an agile team

DevOps also emphasizes experimentation and creativity, using short software development cycles to deploy many small, frequent updates instead of a few large ones. Using DevOps practices, releasing a great new feature or fixing a pesky bug takes hours or days, rather than weeks or months. Enterprises must release features faster than ever to remain relevant in their markets. And that learning comes from understanding the new functionality’s value in the market. Since features have no value until released, enterprises must constantly build, measure, and learn to evolve digital solutions that quickly attract and retain customers. Figure 3 shows that SAFe’s CDP operates as a closed-loop system that fosters rapid, low-risk experimentation and continuous learning about customers’ needs, habits, and preferences.

agile devops team structure

Ideally, team members have shared goals and values, collaborate continuously, and have unified processes and tooling. For an organization to fully leverage DevOps, it should go through a complete cultural shift. A DevOps evangelist is the one who acts as this change agent, inspiring, educating, and motivating people across the organization to embark on the DevOps journey.

Leadership in DevOps Team

Second, specifications are created early and evolve in small batches, with faster feedback on decisions and the opportunity for continuous review and assessment. ARTs cannot implement security through inspection; it must be built into the solution during each iteration. Security testing should shift left to prevent vulnerabilities and be automated to increase the speed and accuracy of compliance. You need to get there somehow, and that probably means a transitional organizational structure. Typically, this will happen with some sort of pilot team that acts as the seed for the organization’s DevOps culture.

An agile team will become ideal when it stops demanding excessive control and can generate a product on its own. In the early stages, it may be necessary to hire coaching experts who can turn the recruitment of specialists of a wide or narrow profile into a coherent structure. An engineering and IT organization that doesn’t work in silos will lead to improved ideas and productivity. It’s a way to build collaboration and transparency across software development and IT operations – leading to greater visibility for business teams and, ultimately, more revenue. This team type functions as a transitional model to type #1 or #2.

Post-release crashes are often the result of testing gaps, as continuous testing does not happen within each phase of the software building process. Besides, test engineer teams might not be able to simulate the bugs in the testing environment. As a result, companies have to condone the uneven and unpredictable pace of software building. However, the majority of IT companies have exited this endless loop by implementing DevOps transformation.

  • It treats infrastructure as code applying version control systems, monitoring tools, virtualization tests to automate and govern the operations as you do with code releases.
  • First of all, it’s useful to look at some bad practices, what we might call ‘anti-types’ (after the ubiquitous ‘anti-pattern‘).
  • Because industry successes with DevOps are now evident, they want to „do DevOps” as well.
  • One way teams create a culture of experimentation and learning is by applying agile development principles.
  • You can only avoid these two extremes by adopting a position somewhere in the middle.
  • All the knowledge and expertise of system administrators and operations teams is packed into various programs and apps that carry out all these tasks.

Engineers take a lead handling the whens, wheres, whos, and hows of a project, briefing everyone on the objectives. Traditional development is not compelling since it doesn’t presuppose scaling. Besides, it has restricting methods of reasoning which hinder collaboration. As innovation business keeps on developing, greater adaptability is required. Many research shows that when people have little sense of autonomy and control in their work, there is more stress and more burnout.


Shana is a product marketer passionate about DevOps and what it means for teams of all shapes and sizes. She loves understanding the challenges software teams face, and building content solutions that help address those challenges. If she’s not at work, she’s likely wandering the aisles of her local Trader Joes, strolling around Golden Gate, or grabbing a beer with friends. However, if you or your team have no experience with the agile approach, you may face some communication difficulties at the initial stage. It happens because different people need to get used to each other and realize mutual possibilities. Perhaps the specifics of the product will require the involvement of other specialists.

A team that communicates effectively will proactively build better applications and infrastructure from the get-go – making rapid incident response even easier when it becomes necessary. The Code Release Manager typically holds the Project Manager role in a DevOps model. Additionally, the Code Release Manager must also have the technical knowledge and expertise to run and maintain the process of product and application development and delivery. A DevOps Code Release manager must also understand how and when to leverage agile methodologies. The opposite of a generalist, a specialist is someone with a specific area of expertise. In a specialist team structure, everyone has a different niche and is responsible for the tasks that fall under their domain.

His responsibilities include strategizing and planning for DevOps adoption within the organization as well as finding the best platforms to increase productivity. If you’re an Evangelist and want to optimize your technology stack, check out our blog post about the top DevOps tools available today. This approach is commonly called “NoOps” as it removes the need for a distinct operations team. This approach works best when a company is developing a single digital product.

DevOps concepts and structures

A good basis for understanding DevOps is “The Three Ways” outlined in The Phoenix Project, a 2013 novel co-written by three expert DevOps practitioners. These principles draw extensively from lean manufacturing and agile development practices. While additional models devops team structure for understanding DevOps exist, such as CALMS—Culture Automation Lean Measurement Sharing—The Three Ways remains one of the most influential. Since the essence of the CALMS model is captured within The Three Ways, this explanation will focus on the latter.

This model recognizes that communication within a team is high-bandwidth. How closely aligned two teams are can affect the speed that information moves between them. Often they are just passionate about the broader software delivery process and want to improve it. This external party can advise on DevOps practices, encourage the use of automation, monitoring and configuration management and foster collaboration between teams. This is usually a temporary setup – as teams would be expected to slowly transition to another, more permanent structure. The least destructive way of adopting DevOps is to hire a consultant or team that is external to both your development and operations teams.

Small business

A DevOps pilot team can work as a bridge between silos for a limited amount of time, as long as their focus is bringing the silos together and their long-term goal is making themselves unnecessary. But once DevOps has become mission critical, the tools and processes being developed and used must themselves be maintained and treated as a project, making a pipeline for your pipeline. Each individual in an efficient DevOps culture interacts with and depends upon other team members to move the team forward. Most agile shops have adopted three approaches for implementing DevOps and continuous delivery models. An often misunderstood aspect of Agile development, this principle perfectly fits the DevOps approach to treating the product as a constant work in progress, rather than one hard delivery on a predetermined schedule.

The Experience Assurance Expert (XA)

Tom is a 25+ year veteran of the IT industry, having worked in environments as large as 40k seats and as small as 50 seats. Throughout the course of a long an interesting career, he has built an in-depth skillset that spans numerous IT disciplines. Tom has designed and architected small, large, and global IT solutions.

Some organisations, particularly smaller ones, might not have the finances, experience, or staff to take a lead on the operational aspects of the software they produce. The ideal DevOps team structure looks like a myth for most companies. Usually, the organizational structures consist of devs and IT operations personnel collaboration, who work as a team with test engineers, database administrators, security teams, and other related parties. Each team has its unique needs, that is why it is better to analyze different models. The DevOps team structure facilitates the ideals of the DevOps culture. The original idea for DevOps wasn’t to change team structures at all.

While members of integrated teams often still specialize, they all should understand how the system functions as a whole. While your “major” might be software development, you would also have a “minor” in operations or vice versa. As classic distinctions between the development team and operations team continue to dissolve in environments that call for continuous delivery, it will take cultural change, team-building, and the right tools to adapt. Remember that no matter how sophisticated your environment, processes, and tools are, it’s the people behind them that shape change into effective, forward-looking and successful DevOps culture and best practices.