Chapter 5. Improving Communication

In a DevOps-centric organization, communication and collaboration are the fundamentals for success. When an organization focuses on agility, the transfer of accurate and complete information must match the pace of delivery—which, in turn, increases value delivered. However, many organizations don’t invest enough into improving communications. For example, the Project Management Institute (PMI) reported that, on average, 40% of all projects that do not meet their original goals and business intent do not succeed due to ineffective communications.1 That’s a staggering number of failures tied to day-to-day communications.

Better, more streamlined communication channels and feedback loops allow teams to make higher-quality decisions more quickly and to identify and respond to mistakes, improving efficiency in service delivery. Improvement in those areas carry tangible boosts for business Key Performance Indicators (KPIs), such as operational costs and profit margins. Framing the issue in terms of organizational value places even greater urgency on improvement in communication efficiency. The first step in the right direction, as we discussed in Chapter 4, is communicating shared goals across teams.

The next step is to ensure that different teams still manage to speak the same language. In this chapter, we examine the importance of shortening feedback loops and cover process points most appropriate for continuous communication channels.

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