Author: Conor Delanbanque
Email [email protected]
Find me on LinkedIn
• Associate Director @ Salt
• From London, currently living in NYC supporting the growth of
Salt’s US operations (22 employees in NYC, 180 globally)
• Responsible for the hiring, growth and scaling of DevOps teams
ranging from small startup companies to some of the biggest
names in technology
• Supported DevOps Transformations utilizing consultants as well as
providing full-time permanent staff to my clients
• Every DevOps Practice is different
• Sometimes we have a whole dedicated DevOps team to support
other project teams, other times we have individual DevOps
experts imbedded within other teams
• Your current technology department, development environment
and infrastructure setup will determine the route you take
• DevOps doesn’t finish, you will always be improving and making
small incremental changes
Do you need to hire somebody?
• Always look internally first – organic growth is best
• Can we retrain our internal teams to adopt DevOps processes?
• Ask ourselves WHY are we hiring this person and what value do we
need them to provide to the team
• Growing the team internally can come with long-term benefits such as
loyalty to the people, environment and a true sense of ownership for
having been a part of the overall journey
• There is also a long list of benefits to hiring someone externally to bring
in new knowledge to the team
Which background do you require?
• Compare preexisting strengths within your team
• Software Engineering background versus Infrastructure/Operations
• Aim to close the skills gaps
• Find the person who will provide the most value in YOUR
environment and go from there
Mindset > Tools
• Tools can be learned but mindsets are harder to change
- They might use a wide variety of tools and technologies but what
problems are they solving?
- Are they a curious person?
- Are they open-minded and still learning to improve upon their
current knowledge? #ContinuousLearning
- When have they failed and learned from their mistakes?
• How will the new team member slot into your organization?
• Will they connect well with the team?
• Be wary of people’s egos and how this will impact others
• A good leader must understand how to smoothly onboard new
Culturally fit for your team?
Which skills do we need?
• Good knowledge of software development practices as well as Infrastructure &
• Continuous Integration and Continuous Delivery/Deployment (Jenkins,
TravisCI, TeamCity, Bamboo)
• Configuration Management (Puppet, Chef, Ansible, Saltstack)
• Version Control (GIT, SVN)
• Scripting (Python, Java, Bash, PHP, Ruby, Powershell)
• Cloud Infrastructure experience is helpful whether you have or haven’t moved
to the cloud yet (AWS, Azure, Google Cloud, Private Clouds)
• Knowledge of Container Orchestration (Docker, Kubernetes, Mesos, Marathon,
Where to find DevOps Engineers?
• In high-demand, do not expect this to be solved overnight
• Be flexible and realize that the candidates hold the power in the DevOps
space, this is very different to hiring a Java or Python Developer
• Start within your network and meet potential new hires at local events (such
as DevOpsDays! Or Docker Havana Meetup and more)
• Host your own event or Meetup by inviting people to your office where you
can later elaborate about your open vacancies
• Ask your friends and people you have worked with previously
• Use LinkedIn.com to search and advertise your vacancies
• An unorganized or poor interview process will mean missing out on hiring
• Have a plan in advance, you should know your interview process before finding
• Keep it simple! 2 or 3 rounds of interviews is usually sufficient:
-1 phone interview (30 minutes to 1 hour)
-1 face to face interview with yourself and other senior team members. Also have
the team take them for lunch or a beer after work
-If required, meet them once more to close the process or have 1 final call if there
are any doubts on either side
El crecimiento toma tiempo!
• Building a well functioning team takes months and sometimes many years
• Expect to make mistakes, just learn from them
• Stay open to feedback from those above and below you in your organization
• Continuously learn and improve
• Focus on small improvements to achieve a long-term greater goal
• Many challenges lie ahead, continue collaborating with those around you and
stay part of this amazing Cuban technology community