How to Build an Agile Development Team Structure in 2022

If you’re new to DevOps, start by orienting your goals to deliver value to customers. And finally, when your team becomes advanced practitioners, incorporate observability to ensure you’re monitoring, measuring, and improving on the right things. Platform teams enable stream-aligned teams to deliver work with substantial autonomy. While the stream-aligned team maintains full ownership of building, running, and fixing an application in production, the platform team provides internal services that the stream-aligned team can use.

  • Advantages of a hybrid structure include improved teamwork, high-quality deliverables, and a greater sense of ownership.
  • The organization of complex tasks into manageable user stories makes it ideal for difficult projects.
  • The scrum master is the role responsible for gluing everything together and ensuring that scrum is being done well.
  • Sales and marketing teams, for example, should understand how DevOps’ benefits can reinforce sales and marketing goals.
  • Joseph is a global best practice trainer and consultant with over 14 years corporate experience.

Teams become self-directed, self-reliant, and have more autonomy, further enabling decentralized decision-making all the way to the individual contributor. Agile teams are more productive than groups of similar individuals, are more engaged in their work, and have more fun on the job. In a Scrum environment, each team member has defined roles and responsibilities. There are no mandatory roles, and the focus is on team member skills and current project needs rather than job titles. Ensure and remember that tools are not the only thing needed for the DevOps culture.

Qualities of a DevOps team

For example, changes in the business environment or evolving technologies can affect product requirements mid-project. Scrum’s agile structure makes it easy to pivot to accommodate changes throughout the development process. Agile frameworks like Scrum make it easy for teams to pivot based on user feedback and changing requirements as they arise—instead of letting these changes disrupt or derail the development process. The Scrum master helps the team apply the Scrum framework successfully.

The scrum master serves the product owner in sprint planning and sprint reviews, ensuring that value is clearly being described and direction set. They serve the development team in the daily scrum by ensuring that work is happening and that blockers are being removed. They also take responsibility for blockers that are outside of the team’s ability to resolve. The scrum master ensures that every opportunity to improve is made transparent to the scrum team and the retrospective has a clear set of outcomes that can be executed. Team member is a broad term that can denote a number of different roles across different industries. For example, an Agile development team will be made up of programmers, UX designers, software developers, and quality assurance testers.

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Teams and DevOps leaders should be wary of anti-patterns, which are marked by silos, lack of communication, and a misprioritization of tools over communication. Claire Drumond is a marketing strategist, speaker, and writer for Atlassian. She is the author of numerous articles published on the Trello and Atlassian blogs and is a regular contributor to various publications on Medium including HackerNoon, Art+Marketing, and PoetsUnlimited. She speaks at tech conferences around the world about agile, breaking down silos, and building empathy. Sprint Planning is an event in scrum that defines what can be delivered in the upcoming sprint and how that work will be achieved.

agile devops team structure

This team structure is dependent on applications that run in a public cloud, since the IaaS team creates scalable, virtual services that the development team uses. This team structure assumes that development and operations sit together and operate on a singular team – acting as a united front with shared goals. Occasionally called “NoOps”, this is commonly seen in technology companies with a single, primary digital product, like Facebook or Netflix. This can even take the form of “you build it, you run it”, with the same individuals developing and operating applications.

Get started with agile scrum roles

The agile ceremonies are where we see the most variations for teams. For example, some teams find doing all of these ceremonies cumbersome and repetitive, while others use them as a necessary check-in. Our advice is to start out using all of the ceremonies for two sprints and see how it feels. You can then perform a quick retro and see where you might need to adjust. Product owners focus on ensuring the development team delivers the most value to the business. No development team wants mixed guidance from multiple product owners.

Shana is a product marketer passionate about DevOps and what it means for teams of all shapes and sizes. She loves understanding the challenges software teams face, and building content solutions that help address those challenges. If she’s not at work, she’s likely wandering the aisles of her local Trader Joes, strolling around Golden Gate, or grabbing a beer with friends. While the actual work a team performs daily will dictate the DevOps toolchain, you will need some type of software to tie together and coordinate the work between your team and the rest of the organization. Jira is a powerful tool that plans, tracks, and manages software development projects, keeping your immediate teammates and the extended organization in the loop on the status of your work. The excellent work from the people at Team Topologies provides a starting point for how Atlassian views the different DevOps team approaches.


As the name suggests, a generalist structure is one where each team member has a general understanding of a wide variety of topics without delving too deeply into any particular one. In simple terms, a generalist is a “Jack of all trades” — they know a little about a lot of things. Because of their versatility, they can work on a number of diverse tasks and switch easily with their colleagues. This Agile structure is typically seen in smaller teams and works well in the sales industry, where professionals can use their base knowledge to sell across many different company sectors.

agile devops team structure

The added layer of Agile ensures that the team is flexible and can respond quickly and effectively to changes. Specialists play a vital role in successfully completing projects in any organization. And you will still need a person who can convey the business vision in detail to the team of engineers. Quality Assurance engineers are typically seen as people who test the finished product before the release to ensure there are no bugs.

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While the focus is on a person’s skill set rather than their job title, a defined set of roles can create clarity in Agile workflows. Automate software delivery processes and scale your business with our DevOps services. Not everyone will understand what DevOps means or why the organization should invest in the new tools, processes devops team structure and people necessary to support it. The Agile Manifesto explicitly prioritizes individuals and interactions, working software, customer collaboration, and responding to change. These are clearly the same priorities of DevOps but extended beyond the development process and into the management of systems and running applications.

In addition, many Agile teams build hybrid models to address their specific needs. However, the work of some teams is better suited to respond to frequent and less plannable events. In this case, SAFe Team Kanban is often the preferred team operating model. SAFe Team Kanban is less dependent on iteration timeboxes, focusing more on a continuous flow of stories through the backlog to the customer. As DevOps becomes more widespread, we often hear software teams are now DevOps teams. However, simply adding new tools or designating a team as DevOps is not enough to fully realize the benefits of DevOps.

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The strength of an agile team lies in its collaboration and recognizing that each team member contributes to work in a sprint. They celebrate each other’s accomplishments and are respectful to one another, the product owner, stakeholders, and the scrum master. At the heart of the workflow for scrum teams is the sprint, a focused and specified period of time where the team completes a set amount of work. The sprint provides structure but also focus to complete the planned amount of work.

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