TechUG Leeds – Process Hacking

April 29, 2016

On April 28, the Technology User Group held an event in Leeds.   TechUG gives local IT professionals a chance to network, hear educational content and benefit from independent advice.

The event had a number of tracks, including a DevOps track curated by specialists from SkyBet.  I was invited to present and used the opportunity to trial some group work on process hacking – applying agile and product thinking to IT service management processes to make sure they are fit for purpose.

I’d like to thank everyone who attended my presentation, their input and feedback was excellent.  The TechUG event was excellent, well done to the organising team and thank you to all the sponsors.

Claire Agutter

Everything you wanted to know about DevOps…

Why we need DevOps

Why we need DevOps

…but were afraid to ask.  This presentation, delivered by SkyBet’s Andy Burgin, was one of the standouts of the day for me.  Andy explained why DevOps is necessary to meet today’s IT challenges, and used analogies from car manufacturing to explain how some companies soared while other failed.

Andy is the host of the regular Leeds DevOps events, which are also well worth attending if you’re in the area.

Breaking IBM Bad

Gary Mulder from SkyBet also delivered a fantastic presentation, based on a case study of taking a major production non-functional issue (primary DB engine segfault) from initial identification, test reproduction, patch verification, to final resolution.

Great presentations tell a story, and Gary told a brilliant story about heroic efforts and tight timescales.  I expect everyone in the room took away one main message – the importance of test environments reflecting production environments.

Process Hacking

In my presentation, I looked at how processes can evolve over time until they don’t meet business needs any more.  When I asked the room how many people had ever cheated on a process, at least 50% of hands went up.

Process hacking encourages organisations to apply Agile and DevOps thinking to process development and improvement.  Attendees worked in small groups in 5 minute sections to think about why organisations use processes, how to identify process failings, and how to reward and motivate staff to get involved with process improvement.

You can view the slide deck here.

And if you’d like to learn more, our courses in Agile Service Management and DevOps go into further detail to help you make positive changes in your organisation.

If you’ve got any thoughts on process hacking I’d love to hear them – get in touch or leave a comment.

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