Why Support is Essential For First-Class DevOps

Director of BPLAbs Rico DiMarzio explains why support is important to all size companies and the key points to analyzing and solving devOp problems.

Interviewer: Thanks Rico for joining us today. Today we're talking about why support is so essential to first-class DevOps. Let's start with in small companies, why is support essential for first-class DevOps?

Rico: I'm glad you asked. So our experience has been with small organizations that usually you have one individual or a couple of individuals who wear a lot of hats, the end result of this is they're not necessarily specialized in any one thing. They're very good at what they do overall, but because they lack specialized skills or exposure to very specific topics, they can't always get the pro ... Get to the bottom of the problem in a timely manner. So having a support team that they can reach out to, that is specific to the problem, or the product they're trying to troubleshoot, really helps make them a rockstar, helps them get to the bottom of the problem faster, helps guide them through that problem so that we understand and get them back to a moving state again.

Interviewer: What about larger, more siloed customers?

Rico: Large organizations are a totally different beast but a similar problem in the sense that a lot of times you have these teams that are highly segregated, and by that I mean you have a group that's dedicated to database support, or another group is dedicated to network support. End result, they all own their pieces but they don't necessarily understand how those pieces play well together. So when you get into a problem, if you don't have somebody who owns the product, knows the product, a lot of times there's nobody there to take and guide them through how to do get to the bottom of the problem.
Interviewer: So we're talking about support being so key to having a first-class DevOps group, what are the key points in, I guess, analyzing a problem and helping a DevOps group work through it?
Rico: So to me, the first one is understanding the root cause of the problem. Do you fully understand exactly what happened? The second one is how to prevent that problem again, and then the third one, if for some odd reason you choose not to come up with a final solution to the problem, do you understand the business risk associated with that? Do you have the information necessary to make a business decision about why you're not going to come up with a final solution or a long term solution to that problem?

Interviewer: So really helping these super agile teams and supporting them in the back.

Rico: Yes, that's exactly right.

Interviewer: Well thanks Rico for joining us today and talking about first-class DevOps and support.

Rico: Thank you for having me.

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