Posted by: Jeff Timmins | February 28, 2017

Release Management feels like UPS sometimes

When I think about Release Management I try to ways to communicate to others at work so they better understand why I do what I do. Sometimes “Safe & Successfully Production deployments” just doesn’t do it. Then I started thinking … yeah, I’m like a UPS driver!

ups-tracking_35 I makes total sense if you think about it, right? The way I think about it, if I’m a driver I shouldn’t be thinking or caring that much what is in a package, I should just care that it going to the right place, in the time promised … and that the package will not kill me! Really, I mean if the package is radioactive then I’d say the UPS driver would care about it being in his truck (I’m guessing they have Mr. Yuck stickers but I’m not sure). Same thing with some phone batteries and other live animals. Anyway, I see safety like a code change passing test in Pre-Production – if it passes testing before being deployed to Production it is safe.

And about the address, can you image if dispatch said “Just ask Joe where to delivery this package, he knows and then Sally about the big brown one” and then the driver runs around looking for Joe and Sally to see if they remember. This feels like directions to me – you cannot say “deploy the fix, Fred knows it” and hope to have an environment that allows people to go on vacation.

Then when I think about repeat customers all stories I’ve heard about stores doing nice things for the UPS drivers that take care of them I think of how a Release Manager cares for (i.e. protects) the Operations team.

Like all analogies this one breaks down at a certain point but I think get the idea.




  1. This makes a great deal of sense. Alas in my Release Management world, I find myself with a veritable basket full of stickers to add that essentially map to “Fragile”, “Adult Signature Required”, “Do Not Stack”, and my favorite “Extremely Urgent!!” If a Call Tag is issued, that’s bad news 😛

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