XebiaLabs Does DOES: What You Missed at the DevOps Enterprise Summit 2018 London

| July 9, 2018 | 0 Comments

DOES London

The XebiaLabs team is back from last month’s DevOps Enterprise Summit, 2018, in London, invigorated with a fresh perspective and some new insights into the DevOps industry.

As the Premier Event Partner, XebiaLabs sent 22 members to the show, where we demoed the XebiaLabs DevOps Platform, assisted attendees with our interactive tools (like the new DevOps Diagram Generator), and facilitated several VIP events.

XebiaLabs CEO, Derek Langone, helped kick off the show by introducing DevOps thought leader and conference emcee, Gene Kim, and unveiling our Periodic Table of DevOps tools, v.3.

DOES London

XebiaLabs CEO, Derek Langone, kicks of the show on stage with IT Revolution’s Gene Kim and Excella Consulting’s Jeff Gallimore.

The XebiaLabs team also attended all the keynotes and speaker sessions–some of which included XebiaLabs customers and other XL team members. Several key themes emerged from the sessions, leaving us with plenty of enterprise DevOps food for thought.

Thank you to everyone who stopped by our booth to chat! Hopefully you were able to partake in a cold drink from the #XLbus!

And if you were unable to attend, don’t worry. The XL team has you covered. Here’s a look at some of the fun moments and key takeaways from DOES London, 2018.

Stakeholder buy-in is imperative for DevOps success.

DOES London

Rob Stroud presents “DevOps for Everyone” on stage with Kurt Straube, DevOps lead at XebiaLabs customer John Hancock.

A recurring message throughout the sessions was, when it comes to DevOps, seek the support of others outside of IT. “Successful product delivery with DevOps has many different engaged stakeholders,” noted Kurt Straube, Systems Director and DevOps Tools Pipeline Lead at John Hancock Financial Services. Straube co-presented his session, “DevOps for Everyone: Bringing DevOps Success to Every App, Tool & Role in Your Organization,” with XebiaLabs Chief Product Officer, Rob Stroud.

Stefan Simenon echoed a similar sentiment in his session, “DevOps for Adults: How to Scale your DevOps Initiative Beyond its Awkward Teenage Years.” Simenon, Head of IT Software Development & Tooling at ABN AMRO Bank, discussed the importance of getting senior management commitment and involvement in DevOps. He also described how the XebiaLabs DevOps Platform provided a framework to scale DevOps at ABN AMRO.

Security can’t be an afterthought when it comes to DevOps.

DevSecOps has been a hot topic lately, and inclusion of security in the DevOps process was part of many presentations at the event. During the “DevOps for Everyone” session, Stroud introduced “Dear Auditor,” an open letter from the DevOps community to auditors. Stroud told attendees that organizations must bring all teams involved in the software development lifecycle into the security process.

DOES London

XebiaLabs Chief Product Officer, Rob Stroud, shows the DOES audience an open letter to auditors.

Mieke Deenen, Senior Project Manager with XebiaLabs customer, UWV, reiterated the importance of security in her session, “Get Started with DevOps in Government.” Deenen encouraged the audience to “embrace security concerns,” stating that things seem to move a lot faster when you have security on your side.

DevOps won’t work unless you get culture right.

Often, organizations focus solely on the tools and technology when it comes to DevOps transformations. However, without alignment and positive interaction among cross-functional teams, a DevOps initiative has no chance of flourishing. Getting culture right was a big theme in many of the DOES sessions.

DOES London

Nike’s Randy Lyons and Michele Power discuss why strategy is meaningless for DevOps if you don’t have the right culture in place.

During the presentation, “My Partner the CFO: at the Table Together to Drive Growth,” Randy Lyons, NDe EMEA Sr. Director at Nike, told the audience that “culture eats strategy for breakfast.” Lyons emphasized the hashtag #OneTeam throughout the session when referring to the many different branches under Nike’s IT team. Lyons co-presented with Michele Power, CFO Nike Direct EMEA.

In the XebiaLabs customer Dutch Railways (NS) breakout, “All Aboard the DevOps Train,” Huub van der Wouden, Program Manager Lean and Agile Software development, and Ard Westerik, Manager Software Development IT Commerce, revealed some fun team building activities they’ve implemented to bring their employees together and encourage involvement in their DevOps strategy. These activities include a book club and “CD of the month” program where teams come up with songs to illustrate their DevOps initiatives.

And during his presentation, “Flow: Taking Agile Forward,” Fin Goulding, International CIO at Aviva Group, another XebiaLabs customer, talked about the absolute necessity of “hacking” a culture where the focus is on changing mindsets so that people are open to doing Agile in a different way. Agile, he says, has become a “rigid methodology instead of a philosophy.” But there is hope in what he calls “Flow,” a set of principles for extending Agile to customers and business executives. Improving transparency and changing culture–starting from the top–are vital for moving Agile forward.

Once culture is in place, do you have the tools to get the job done?

Of course there was still plenty of talk about tooling. Many of the speakers shared diagrams of their team’s pipeline stack, showing the various tools they use to build, code, test, and release software. The common takeaway? Automating processes is the key to scaling DevOps.


“Automation is everyone’s job,” insisted XebiaLabs customer, John Rzeszotarski, SVP, Director of Continuous Delivery and Feedback at KeyBank. Rzeszotarski used his session, “KeyOps: an Operations Story,” to discuss his team’s release model.

Deenen also shared that the new policy at UWV is that every application must use deployment automation.

DevOps is a never-ending journey.

Another common thread throughout the sessions was the notion of continuous improvement. Although DevOps is a journey, there is really no endpoint. In her presentation “The Data Behind DevOps: Becoming a High Performer,” Nicole Forsgren, CEO and Chief Scientist of DORA, warned of putting too much stock in maturity models. “We should always keep improving and reassessing,” she instructed, adding that maturing models are for “chumps.”

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DevOps expert and XebiaLabs strategic advisor, Nicole Forsgren, doesn’t mince words when it comes to her views on maturity models.

Simenon also put a great deal of emphasis on continual learning and improvement, and even made it part of his team’s responsibilities.

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ABN AMRO Bank’s Stefan Simenon gives the audience a rundown of how his team scaled its DevOps efforts with XebiaLabs.

Here’s a look at what else was going on at at DOES…

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To see the keynotes and breakout sessions from the DevOps Enterprise Summit 2018, head over to the IT Revolution YouTube channel.

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Andrea Davis

About the Author ()

Andrea Davis is a Digital Marketing Manager for XebiaLabs.