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How HugOps Help Reduce Software Developer Burnout


To Software Love and Solidarity

Have you ever heard the term “HugOps” floating around in conversations among DevOps teams? Maybe you’ve seen #hugops posts on Twitter, where software engineers show solidarity for those experiencing outages. There’s even a song about HugOps. If people are singing about it, it’s got to be inspiring-right?

Let’s discuss this harmonious methodology so many DevOps teams are embracing. We’ll also look at how feature flagging and experimentation tools are yet another way to give a long and welcome hug to the community.

Ready to hug it out? Let’s dive in.

So What’s HugOps Exactly?

HugOps is a form of “Human-Oriented Operations,” and it’s a new way of looking at traditional DevOps practices. Instead of focusing on automation and efficiency directly, HugOps focuses on creating environments that value collaboration, communication, and deeper understanding between teams. At the end of the day, this creates a better work environment for everyone involved.

Today’s software teams are pressured to do more with less. That can’t happen until we all reach across silos, create more transparency, and support each other along the way. New technology such as feature flags can help us get there. And, even though the goal of HugOps isn’t to drive productivity, done properly—the result is just that.

HugOps As a Code to Live By

In order to fully understand the power of HugOps and its warm embrace, let’s get to the heart of it. Here’s what we can live by as software teams, and how we can share support and solidarity year round.

This isn’t a flimsy Valentine’s Day card: it’s a code to live by!

Building Trust Across Teams

So many aspects of software jobs have become siloed. If you’re at a big company, there might be 500 engineers working on one system with little communication across teams. Not to mention the communication breakdowns across departments. The solution isn’t just talking it out more; it’s establishing technology that promotes more visibility across digital initiatives. And when we talk about visibility, we’re talking about the availability of data to everyone involved. Tracking initiatives to help companies make data-driven decisions removes hesitancy and uncertainty. Inversely, it encourages transparency and trust.

Giving Back Nights and Weekends

DevOp teams shouldn’t be drained by long work hours. Nobody should be at the whim of a late-night feature release or a bug triage. As managers, let’s remind the world that work was meant for working hours. Let’s take back the 9-5 as a software community. We’ll employ a strategy of small and frequent software releases, and enable fearless response times through modern debugging strategies.

Empathizing With Incidents

Your high school coaches were wrong when they told you failure isn’t an option. The reality (especially for software) is that digital experiences are bound to break. Version control issues will inevitably appear. We could do all the right things, and that wouldn’t stop a bug from landing right on the tip of our nose. It’s time to empathize with the issues that arise, and shift the focus toward solutions. How can we be prepared for the inevitable with a quick software fix? Let’s explore strategies that effectively answer this question.

Focusing On Continuous Improvement

Perfection is the enemy. Progress is the goal. Continuous Delivery and Integration lets us deploy software and try things out without fully committing to changes. By implementing strategies and technologies that spark collaboration and flexibility allow teams to adjust on the fly and without fear. Talk about a bear hug of psychological safety.

Celebrating Success

You shouldn’t be looking at software teams like they’re resources. Today, they’re far beyond. They’re tomorrow’s innovators, builders, digital creatives, and they’re actually the fastest growing profit centers for companies. Responding to incidents the right way is very valuable to companies and should be rewarded regularly. Celebrate ASAP!

Feature Flagging Tools: A HugOps Technology

One tool that can help DevOps teams embrace the principles of HugOps is feature flags (also known as feature toggles). Feature flags are small pieces of code that allow developers to control which features are enabled or disabled in their applications at any given time. By using feature flags, developers can quickly make changes to their application without having to deploy a new version. Now every time they want to make a change or fix a bug, a feature flag can save time and money for both the developer and their team.

Additionally, feature flags help promote collaboration because they allow developers to easily share their code with other team members. Developers don’t have to worry about potential conflicts or issues arising from different versions being deployed at once.

Finally, feature flags enable effortless and safe experimentation. With this, teams can A/B test and try new features on small segments of users without disturbing key infrastructure. This doesn’t slow down the development process. It actually speeds things up by creating a space of psychological safety for them in the process. As a result, developers can rediscover their joy of building in the process.


Make feature management and experimentation a part of your modern processes, and let’s hug it out (metaphorically speaking).

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Want to Dive Deeper?

We have a lot to explore that can help you understand feature flags. Learn more about benefits, use cases, and real world applications that you can try.

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