CI and CD, DevOps, Interviews

Interview with GE Healthcare: Preparing for the DevOps Journey

Mikael Siirtola
Product Owner, GE Healthcare

Mikael Siirtola
Product Owner, GE Healthcare

Prior to health:CODE in November, we.CONECT spoke with Mikael Siirtola, Product Owner, GE Healthcare.
“I grow digital factories. Before automation engineers went to paper mills to improve production quality and speed – now I employ latest methodologies and technologies to do the same to companies that work on software. I have successfully implemented improvements to various embedded and desktop production pipelines and made a huge turnaround in testing of a big project. In six months, we got same amount of work done as previous 2.5 years.”

we.CONECT: How would you summarise GE Healthcare DevOps journey so far?

Mikael: Well we are improving constantly the way we work here at GE so even though we have invested in DevOps it was change as usual. We find out a probable better way, experiment around it, implement it and learn from it. In DevOps we have been investing in test automation for quite a while.

we.CONECT: How is automated testing increasing your software delivery pipeline performance?

Mikael: Constantly doing regression testing during long projects would be very expensive without extensive use of test automation. It also enables that some testing is done every night so when people come to work in the morning they have more information how the latest build has performed.

we.CONECT: What would you say are the main particularities of the healthcare industry when it comes to software development and Continuous Delivery?

Mikael: The regulatory aspect is perhaps one of the key challenges in the healthcare industry. The continuous delivery is something that needs a different approach in the healthcare especially on patient critical systems compared to other industries such as web development.

we.CONECT: What are the main advantages of automated testing in the healthcare industry?

Mikael: Automated testing provides higher quality and wider testing in the earlier phases of the software development. It also shortens the development cycles by making procedural testing faster.

we.CONECT: You’ll be speaking at health:CODE in Berlin about ‘Preparing for DevOps Journey – what you need and where to start?’ Please can you give us an idea of what delegates will take away from the session?

Mikael: How to start DevOps and how to experiment and find the way that might work for you in fast iterations. This should also provide you some ideas where to start.

we.CONECT: What expectations do you have regarding the health:CODE event in Berlin? Which outcomes and benefits do you expect to gain from the exchange with the participants?

Mikael: I’d like to see what is happening in the DevOps field in other healthcare companies.

we.CONECT: Which burning topics would you like to discuss within the DevOps healthcare community?

Mikael: Virtualization of hardware to enable scalable engineering testing.

we.CONECT: Time for some shout outs! What did you read recently that would interest other like-minded people? Have you seen/heard any inspirational speakers recently? Who is a Continuous Delivery guru or inspiration in your eyes?

Mikael: I recommend everybody to go to their local DevOps and test automation meetups. They have been a good source of inspiration for me.

we.CONECT: Thank you Mikael for taking part in this interview.