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Manager Systems Engineering at a manufacturing company with 10,001+ employees
Real User
Helps to improve productivity but specific disciplines need to be addressed
Pros and Cons
  • "We can eliminate some of the middleman processes."
  • "It should be able to handle the different types. There is ecosystems engineering, and there is software applications engineering. There is a need to bring these teams together, but the disciplines don't integrate very well, and so it won't work."

What is our primary use case?

We use Azure DevOps to place our corporate servers into the cloud. We perform evaluations in the cloud for clients. Occasionally, we provide a hybrid solution in a specific cloud. For corporate work, we usually use a different cloud. With Microsoft Azure DevOps, as with any DevOps, it is not always possible to identify specific use cases. How do you identify a specific feature from a hundred requirements into a specific use case? It is very easy to lose detail. Traditional teams and ways of working methodically for safety-critical systems are not always prepared to handle that. It is important to be able to handle hundreds of detail-oriented requirements.

How has it helped my organization?

Azure DevOps is now used for safety-critical systems, whereas in the past the traditional approaches were used in requirements management. This is more like the traditional waterfall model. Improvement is always unique to productivity. That's why we switched to Microsoft Azure DevOps. The software teams prefer it to IBM.

What is most valuable?

We can eliminate some of the middleman processes. In the process, we are merging DevOps with development and operations. So developers act like our operation team as well. That concept is a great exchange. It brings a high level of visibility. It helps the team and department cohesion, which helps to improve productivity. 

It also includes a high level of traceability and elimination of some of the unwanted silos in productivity. Testing and transparency need to be defined within the boundaries. If a backlog occurs, you should be able to group them as a whole. This means there is a backlogging to the team, as opposed to individual areas. Each area needs to be visible to other areas, at all times.

What needs improvement?

Microsoft needs to consider ruggedization and addressing specific disciplines. Fundamentally what I mean by that is you cannot merge everything. It should be able to handle the different types. There is ecosystems engineering, and there is software applications engineering. There is a need to bring these teams together, but the disciplines don't integrate very well, and so it won't work. For example, there is expertise in an area, and they tend to view the project from their own perspective. 

For example, the software UI/ UX team needs to view it from the UX perspective. Application engineers need to view it from the application viewpoint and the engineering perspective is different again. Although we need to be cohesive in our approach, we need to keep some boundaries as well. The idea of containers arises, such as those provided by the open source software product Kubernetes. We need to containerize different disciplines and then merge them. As a manager, I should be able to ask the formative team to focus on their creative section, and that their task is completed. In the Application layer, you also focus on their requirements and you establish traceability. Other teams may also be involved in linking to the overall requirements.

For how long have I used the solution?

I have been using Azure DevOps for one year. It has been used in the company for about two years. It is used in the cloud and on-premises, as a hybrid cloud solution.

What about the implementation team?

We implemented on-premise as a hybrid solution, and on the cloud.

What other advice do I have?

I would give Microsoft Azure DevOps a six out of 10. Microsoft Azure DevOps is not perfected yet, as it needs to be more user friendly. If it can achieve that it will eventually reach a 10.

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

Hybrid Cloud

If public cloud, private cloud, or hybrid cloud, which cloud provider do you use?

Microsoft Azure
Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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