An Exploratory Study on the DevOps IT Alignment Model

Michael Hart, John Burke
Interdisciplinary Journal of Information, Knowledge, and Management  •  Volume 15  •  2020  •  pp. 127-154

Based on business-IT alignment, this study addresses the understudied practice of DevOps.

Although organizations continue to implement DevOps practices, few studies explore connections with prior theory. This study contributes to this need by developing the DevOps strategic IT alignment model.

The sample included 57 firms from the current Forbes Global 2000 and the Fortune 500 lists. The authors employed partial least squares structural equation modeling (PLS-SEM) to evaluate the DevOps IT alignment model.

The proposed model builds a foundation for further investigation into the influence of theory on DevOps using quantitative research methods. It also contributes to a reliable and valid DevOps instrument for future exploration.

Continuous integration of software and knowledge sharing increases the level of IT subunit alignment in large organizations that foster DevOps. Furthermore, practicing DevOps positively influences the level of business-IT alignment.

Organizations that cultivate DevOps experience greater levels of business-IT alignment through stronger knowledge sharing and continuous integration of applications. Thus, managers should identify how to develop closer bonds between subunits with dissimilar skillsets in their organizations.

Researchers should explore how theories interact, help, and/or do not support blossoming practices like DevOps.

Stronger bonds increase knowledge sharing between interdepartmental colleagues. Lower hierarchical levels of an organization as well as higher managerial levels benefit from cross-domain IT knowledge.

It is important to explore how different types of knowledge in diverse disciplines requires unique cross-discipline bonds to form and whether these relationships have connections with the contingency theory and quality management.

DevOps, strategic IT alignment, contingency theory, continuous integration, knowledge sharing, continuous deployment, software theory
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