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DevOpsDays Ghent 2019: key takeaways

DevOpsDays 2019 was a 2-day conference situated in Ghent, that took place on October 29 and 30. This IT conference was part of a worldwide series about software development and IT infrastructure operations. There were talks and open space content covering topics like automation, testing, security & organisation culture. Devoteam had a booth and our DevOps expert Patrik Schrey & our former OpenSource Practice Manager Bastiaan Ceuppens were present. In this blog post, they share their experiences and key takeaways.

10 years ago, the first ‘DevOpsDays’ event was organised in Ghent, and almost 70 people participated. Its organiser, Patrick Debois, could have never guessed that joining forces between Development and Operations could grow to the proportions it has reached today.

Maybe it was the perfect storm: ‘Open Source’ was growing, ‘Agile’ development was not enough, ‘Lean IT’ and ‘Continuous Delivery’ using a deployment pipeline got attention and ‘Cloud’ became a word that meant more than just that thing in the sky. Building on and combining these pillars with a simple vision of improving the software delivery performance based on high-trust collaboration, proved to be an explosive mixture that blew up in both the development and infrastructure communities.

Since DevOps had given us a lot in the past years in terms of a foundation on which to build, Devoteam decided to be a Gold Sponsor at DevOpsDays Ghent 2019. We met ex-colleagues, technology partners and competitors in a friendly atmosphere over food and drinks. One of us could even take a picture with Patrick Debois himself.

But what did we take away from our two days at DevOpsDays 2019?


A 10-year anniversary is always an opportunity to look back on where it all started and how we got to the present. A lot of talks had this topic as their central storyline, with lessons learned both from their successes and past mistakes. The fact that DevOps is omnipresent in 2019 is not something anyone expected back in 2009. What DevOps is about has also evolved since its inception, something that is to be expected when so many people with different backgrounds are involved in something.


Inclusivity, culture, communication, diversity. Those are the topics that spanned most of the talks or were mentioned during, and for a good reason. Diversity in teams leads to more creative solutions. Inclusion leads to better products. Organizing teams to improve communication is key. And all of this supported by a high-trust organizational culture.


DevOps will continue to evolve in the coming years. Most people weren’t expecting DevOps to grow to its current incarnation when the word ‘hit the scene’ around ten years ago. DevSecOps has already been on the market for a couple of years now, involving the security teams in the whole of DevOps. The next step is involving every other department in an organisation. DevMarkOps? DevSalOps? DevHROps? Who will be able to tell? You just work on the next constraint at hand.

In the end, DevOps is about breaking down walls and talking to interesting people on the other side of those walls. It’s about looking for ways to help each other out and to remove most of the ‘boring stuff’ where wanted. This all happens in the spirit of adding value and delighting your customers.

DevOps may not be about technology, but for us, technology does play a key role to make the transformation a success. Automation is at the core of it all, and it’s also where we get our motivation from. Helping out colleagues by automating a tedious part of their job and giving them back hours they would otherwise have lost is what we live for. Whether that is automating a simple email when a certain task has been completed or a full end-to-end deployment to production upon approval of a pull request; they all provide that same satisfying feeling.