Opinions on building platforms

Continuous Deployment - A Vanity Metric?

I’ve recently seen a few articles/presentations carrying the claim “481,000 deployments a day!”, “Deployment every 3 seconds!”, or “We deploy more frequently than we breathe – or we sack the junior ops guy!”. Very exciting.

Having the capability to deploy frequently is important for a variety of reasons; fast feedback, quickly realising value, reducing risk deltas, increasing confidence, and so on. However, I also think that frequent deployment is useless without making use of that feedback.

Continuous Deployment is an enabler of fast feedback, but it’s not the end goal. If the feedback isn’t utilised by product owners to inform their decisions, there’s little point in creating it. The practice becomes a local optimisation.

I’ve deliberately chosen to differentiate Continuous Delivery from Continuous Deployment here, as I believe Continuous Delivery implies that value is being delivered, whereas Continuous Deployment suggests focusing on deploying frequently.

We need to optimise cycle time for the whole business, not just the dev/ops/devops/<current silo label> team.