The road to devops

A chain of supermarkets, with all its complex and challenging IT systems, benefits greatly from speedy development. The less teams depend on other teams or colleagues, the faster development processes can start and finish.

That’s why we are transitioning from scrum to devops as our development methodology. To help our people make that shift, a program was introduced that involves ceremonies to celebrate special milestones in their devops journey. Coen van de Maade, Teamlead Finance at Jumbo Tech Campus, tells us about devops and celebrating progress at Jumbo Tech Campus.

Getting it done

Coen starts off by praising his colleagues’ speed and agility: “Here, on our Tech Campus, we have the professionals that can make the right choices and quickly take the right steps when needed.  They have the qualities they need to work together and to work fast.”

So, now, it’s just a matter of applying the devops rules to Jumbo, right?

Choose a method and color it yellow

Coen: “Sounds great, but within an organization like Jumbo you just can’t take a standard method, hand people the manual and wish them luck. Coen: “Even just from my -financial – perspective, Jumbo is far too complex for standard sets of rules.”

“We did what helped us become the fast-growing enterprise we are today: we took a proven method and ‘painted it yellow’. We developed a 6-step program to move from scrum to devops, with the help of people already skilled in developing this way.”

A cause for celebrations

“As you move through those steps as a team or a team member, you gather badges and get invited to ceremonies. It takes place every 4 weeks, and is hosted by Gosse Reinsma, our manager Jumbo Tech Campus. I think it’s great that he takes the time to do that. It shows how important the shift to devops is to him and to our  campus.”

When you get your final badge, you’re devops ready. Coen: “That’s a special moment. So, there’s also a special prize to go along with that achievement, which I won’t mention here. Some things are more fun when they remain a mystery.”


Coen emphasizes that it’s not just about developing ‘better, faster, bigger’. “We really want our developers to own what they create. So, all knowledge and experience reside with them. Then, if they think they can improve on something, they can do it themselves. Not having to wait for other teams is a big advantage. But Devops also comes with responsibility. You could get a call in the middle of the night when it fails. It probably won’t happen and not every part is that mission-critical, but in theory it could happen.”

Luckily, according to Coen, there’s a simple way to prevent that from happening. As he gets ready to tell us this secret, his face lights up with a slightly devious smile: “Just make sure that what you make it so good, it will never fail.”

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