Business Leader Interview with Rutesh Shah

Hear how Infostretch enables DevOps transformation with CloudBees

Alan Shimel: Hi everyone, this is Alan Shimel,, DevOpsTV. We’re here live on the floor of Jenkins World. Happy to be joined by Rutesh Shah, CEO of Infostretch.

Rutesh Shah: Great to be with you.

Alan: Great to be here. Rutesh Shah, Infostretch is a– I don’t know how many of my listeners have heard of Infostretch, but you guys have really grown into a major provider of DevOps consulting, training, services, nationwide, if not worldwide.

Rutesh: It’s worldwide.

Alan: Yes, it’s worldwide.

Rutesh: It is worldwide.

Alan: I think I spoke to your media person, yes. Big news for you guys here at the show is you announced the Jenkins Training.

Rutesh: Jenkins Training, another plugin to Jenkins to convert the free-floating jobs to the pipeline using a plugin.

Alan: Let’s talk a little bit about Jenkins Training. It would seem to me, as easy as they want to make it, it’s not the kind of thing you do without training.

Rutesh: If you see the whole DevOps phenomena, it’s all a lot of technology and engineering involved. The traditional operations guys, if they wanted to get trained into the automation of the processes, they always thought that after everything is developed it’s their responsibility to start. What DevOps does is brings them together with development team and brings development and testing and security and others with the operations team. This training becomes very critical to make sure that this cross-boundary pollination that has to happen happens. It’s a technology training, plus, I think Cloud Bees has put good efforts to make sure that really qualified people get certified. I think training is a big thing. If you’re not trained properly, you might not be able to achieve the automation.

Alan: You know something Rutesh? It’s an interesting thing. I was talking to a CEO, not of a vendor, of a company. He was telling me how hard it is to hire DevOps people. He said, “It’s not that there aren’t a lot of people out there who claimed to be DevOps. You come to their resume and they know everything. They know Jenkins. They know Puppet. They know Chef. They know everything. Then you find out they really know nothing.” At this point, we haven’t really matured in certification and training. Everybody is self-taught. When you’re self-taught, there’s no standard.

Rutesh: Yes. I think we as a company, we started with DevOps three years ago. We really invested in making sure our engineers understand this so-called umbrella term DevOps. Because what is DevOps in our eyes, DevOps is anything that helps you to automate any process in software development lifecycle so that you can make it predictable and repeatable. It could be your development related activities, it could be unique testing, it could be the normal testing, it could be operations, it could be security. Now, how do you train someone with this? You have to really give them the umbrella view of your methodology. Say, “If you are at this level, this is your maturity.” We came up with working with Cloud Bees the whole maturity model that helps them understand that any organization who wants to traverse through the DevOps path, in the maturity path, these are the things that they have to do.

I think that is the critical element. You’re not going to find that kind of talent just off the street because it’s a new thing. In our own customer base, we have 58 customer base, about 58 customers that we work with, we really have to go and inspire them to do the real DevOps. Most of them claimed that they do it, but when they really start talking, they are the maturity level one. One other option would be about 10 to 12% at the most, the real DevOps. You have some clients really going to the maturity level two or three. The key is you’re not going to be able to find people in the field, you really have to commit to it. It takes time. It takes commitment from management and your infrastructure team to make things happen before you really get the real DevOps team in place. It’s a cultural shift.

Alan: It is.

Rutesh: Everybody’s going to have a big cultural shift.

Alan: At the end of the day, this is cultural. You know what else Rutesh? The numbers you’re siding are just– we just did a survey with Veracode. It was about training for DevOps. It just came out. Those numbers are pretty much right there.

Rutesh: It has to be high.

Alan: Yes, that’s right, they are. I think what it is, is we sometimes forget because we live in a DevOps bubble. Everyone you know is doing DevOps because it’s what we deal with. Really, you forget just how small that bubble really is in terms of the wider world out there. Now, I’m an optimist, to me that says, “What an opportunity?”

Rutesh: It’s a big opportunity.

Alan: It’s a big opportunity.

Rutesh: It’s just in the tip of the iceberg right now if you see it, I think if 10% of organizations have really started becoming mature, remaining 90% will see those and very quickly adopt this transition platform.

Alan: Only if they see the other 10 have an advantage. I think that goes– I had Jez Humble and Nicole Ford’s been here earlier and I spoke to the Electric Cloud people about something they have got called DevOps Insights. I see a big push towards going where we can quantify the advantages of DevOps because that’s what will get that other 90%.

Rutesh: You ought to not only do it to the technology or ideal organization, you have to also do that to the business organization because they’re currently at loss, everything is working well, all of a sudden we’re re-architecting everything. Or because you want to go to digital, every two weeks you want to release it. These are the foundation elements for those, if you don’t do it, if you don’t invest into backlog test automation, you’re not going to be able to get there. We, in our consulting engagement first week, we spend on just educating customers and we actually demand that not only technology guys but the business guys also sit into these discussions.

Alan: Your infrastructure is a big Cloud Bees partner, you’ve been at a few of these Jenkins Worlds.

Rutesh: This is our third, I believe.

Alan: Mine too. This is way bigger though, yes?

Rutesh: It is much bigger, I think much bigger, much louder, and much noisier.

Alan: Don’t worry, our microphones are good, they work, we don’t have to worry about that.

Rutesh: What I’ve seen here, because of the engineers and the DevOps people that are coming here, they’re interested in getting every bit that they can. Even during the lunch hour, you’ll see them eating sandwich and clouding around and listening to the presentations. It’s a great community, I love it, I love to come here, there’s a lot of learning for us. My humble beginning happened with DevOps when I came to the first conference four years ago and we said, “We are in test automation, DevOps is the next big thing.” Last year we have been repeatedly coming here and we’re committed to continue to grow with Cloud Bees.

Alan: I was talking to KK earlier and one of the observations– and again, I don’t have metrics for this but my gut is telling me, been talking to a lot of people on the floor, not only do we have more people but the level of people, their level of Jenkins understanding, their level of DevOps understanding– you know how sometimes you serve it with a helpdesk, you got level one, level two, level three. These are all level two and level three guys, you don’t see a lot of the level one people anymore. I think that’s the biggest difference.

Rutesh: I think that’s what this training that Cloud Bees rolled out two years back and then started maturing, it has started coming to play. Everybody has done bits and pieces but this is a big ocean. If you see it from tools perspective it’s big ocean, processes, how you’re automating it, what are the frameworks you’re using it. I can’t even keep track of the names of the tools and technologies that are now popping up almost every other day in open source community. We did a great thing, I would harass people here to stop by our booth but who doesn’t like Game of Thrones these days? We came up with the concept of Game of Thrones and put the whole map out and put all the tools.

Alan: I’ve seen this, we have it in one of my slides, it says the Kingdoms of DevOps.

Rutesh: That’s how people are going to adopt it, these are the tools that you have, it falls into this bucket, it doesn’t fall into that bucket, try to use it in a wise way.

Alan: There’s a lot of that education but like you said, there’s a tremendous opportunity.

Rutesh: It’s a great opportunity.

Alan: Anyway, last thing before you go. I need you to look into one of these two cameras, this one. For our audience out there who wasn’t lucky enough to come to Jenkins World this year, why should they come next year?

Rutesh: Jenkins World, at least three years I’ve been here, it has grown, I think, dramatically both in terms of number of people attending it plus the quality of people that you get to mingle and collaborate with. I expect that Jenkins with the pipeline architecture has really cultivated this new culture of all these tools and technology in DevOps that will keep coming, this will continue to become a pipeline. I believe this conference is actually a pipeline that if you come here you get to attach to so many other things, not only Jenkins and Jenkins plugins but so many other things that you need to know. I think the sessions are real-life experience sessions so I would highly recommend people to come to this conference.

Alan: Thank you.

Rutesh: Thank you very much, thanks.

Alan: Rutesh Shah, CEO, Infostretch here at Jenkins World. This is Alan Shimel for and DevOpsTV. Thanks, everyone.