DevOps at RSA Insurance - an organisational perspective

RSA DevOps is rooted in a culture of continuous improvement

clock • 3 min read
DevOps at RSA - an organisational perspective

DevOps at RSA - an organisational perspective

DevOps enables RSA insurance group to continue to be the leader in the insurance world. DevOps in RSA creates a culture of shared responsibility, transparency, and faster feedback and thus enables stronger bonds between Dev, Ops and other stakeholders in the company.

We can revolutionise how insurance is brokered, how checks are done and claims are made as well as use technology to allow us to provide insurance for new areas that could not be insured before.

DevOps in general is a business drive to improve communication and collaboration among development and operations teams, in order to increase the speed and quality of software deployment. RSA DevOps promotes shorter, more controllable iterations through the adoption of best practices, automation and new tools.

Building a culture of shared responsibility, transparency, and faster feedback is the foundation of RSA's high-performing DevOps team. Here we focus on build, test and maintain infrastructure and tools so that application (software/services) can be developed and released. This includes SaaS/PaaS and self-hosted products. At RSA we host a flexible infrastructure by moving over to cloud and code maintainability is achieved centrally using ADO.

RSA DevOps primary focus is on automation based on the following principles:

  • Delivery pipeline: All deliveries are viewed as a pipeline of work to be delivered. This can take the form of CI/CD pipelines.
  • Self-service (empower others): All delivery pipelines must empower stake holders of the Delivery pipeline to delivery what they need.
  • Culture/process: Culture and process are focused around how they effect and improve the DORA metrics.
  • Infrastructure ownership: DevOps owns Infrastructure for tools and products from inception to production.

As against any other organisation we ve had a number of challenges that we ve overcome in the last year, but there is a still a road ahead. One of the major challenges is not just the complexity but funding as well. Given the significant organisational and IT changes involved—with previously siloed teams joining forces, changing job roles, and encountering other transitions, it might still take a bit more time to emerge with complete victory.

One of the outstanding achievements from RSA DevOps from my perspective is fully establishing the DORA metrics. The DORA metrics dashboard has been built which shows the deployment frequency, change failure rate, mean time to recover and lead time for change.

These DORA Metrics tracking have been effective in the following areas:

  • Provide realistic response estimates
  • Improve work planning
  • Identify areas for improvement
  • Build consensus for technical and resource investments

RSA DevOps is rooted in a culture of continuous improvement. Teams collect feedback from monitoring and user experience, making data-driven decisions to enhance software features and performance.

Overall the benefits outweigh the risks at RSA, and has led to much better results, improved software development, and has  even improved team morale. RSA strongly  believes companies that adopt DevOps are often more competitive as they can adapt to market changes, deliver new features faster, and provide a more reliable user experience, all of which contribute to a competitive edge.

When I spoke to the Head of DevOps at RSA, he mentioned the DevOps Academy that has been established in the organisation, running a series of free internal workshops to help anyone learn about DevOps, what it is, how it helps people and the organisation on a whole.

I'm really proud to be a part of RSA with such an initiative to educate anyone who may or may not related to DevOps in the IT world, which is the need of the hour.

Uma Thirugnanam is Lead Test Architect at RSA Insurance


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