Serverless workflow software company Stackery recently appointed Tim Zonca as Chief Executive Officer and a member of the Board of Directors. Zonca previously served as Senior Vice President of Worldwide Marketing for Puppet where he expanded global demand for Puppet’s DevOps product portfolio, most notably across EMEA and APAC, and led the team that pioneered the world’s largest set of DevOps research.
Here is an exclusive interview with Zonca
Swapnil Bhartiya: What value did you see in Stackery, in the context of fast-paced cloud-native world that you decided to join the company?
Tim Zonca: One of the first things that became apparent to me about Stackery was the strength of the vision that the team has set forward. In the most fundamental and simple sense, it’s a vision of empowerment: empowering people to make a difference. That’s a really compelling mission to me. The cloud service providers are putting a remarkable set of ingredients on the shelf for developers to choose from. Serverless is going to shape the way that applications are built for the next decade, and seeing what Stackery has done to democratize the process of bringing serverless to developers, teams, and the enterprise is something I want to be a part of.
Most enterprises have a team, or maybe even a few teams, who have been practicing DevOps and leveraging the promise of cloud and serverless. But how do you scale that across dozens, or even hundreds of development teams in the enterprise?
Stackery asked a simple question: How can a developer choose from a menu of services, focus on the business logic, and then work with their team to safely and autonomously deploy a production ready service? Ideally, without having to be an expert in the permission settings and nuances of every single service? Today, the clickable Stackery menu of services is AWS focused with functions, database tables, API Gateways, Fargate container services, secrets management, timers, and more. However, we also see customers adding services like Twilio, Fauna, InfluxDB, content delivery networks, and other API-driven services. As the ecosystem of services expands and knative powered services appear in private enterprise clouds or elsewhere, we expect Stackery will help developers integrate and iterate those services into application architectures as well.
The cloud native ecosystem is obviously growing at an incredible pace and that’s great to see. Incredible innovation is happening in the open source community, in Amazon Web Services, Google Cloud Platform, and Microsoft Azure along with the adoption of CI/CD within organizations. The Stackery approach to serverless, is cloud native from a developer perspective.
The industry trope is serverless vs kubernetes, but that distinction is missing the point of what the business is asking for. If you have existing applications that need to run infrastructure more efficiently, then Kubernetes or a cloud container service might be right for you. However, as soon as you have to rearchitect and modernize an application or build a new application, then you need to take a hard look at serverless. What the business wants in that scenario is time to market and developer agility with risk mitigation, efficiency, and security. If time to market is a core business need, serverless is the path a growing number of companies are choosing. If you also need to ensure those services are secure, monitored, logged, set up properly and agile enough to iterate, that’s where Stackery powers serverless teams.
Swapnil Bhartiya: What are the biggest challenges companies still faced when it comes to digital transformation?
Tim Zonca: One of the biggest challenges today is scaling success. Most enterprises have a team, or maybe even a few teams, who have been practicing DevOps and leveraging the promise of cloud and serverless. But how do you scale that across dozens, or even hundreds of development teams in the enterprise? That isn’t just a technology challenge, it’s a skills challenge, a process challenge, and change management challenge. The role we play for those enterprises is making it easier to succeed with serverless, and then scaling that success across teams quickly, but safely.
Stackery makes it easy for developers to stitch those building blocks together, focus on the business logic, deploy a secure and monitored app on day 1, and enable teams to continuously iterate on those applications. That iteration is key—iteration velocity is what sets teams apart. Driving business value through software delivery is at the heart of the devops and agile movements.
Swapnil Bhartiya: Is digital transformation a destination or a journey.
Tim Zonca: It’s a journey. The devops research team at Puppet has clearly demonstrated that time to market and the ability to iterate software separates high performing companies from low performing companies. And no one stops. The best, most agile teams on the planet only continue to get better. So it’s surely a journey. Our role is to empower those developers and teams that understand the value of focusing on building and delivery differentiation, and not spending time on the underlying bits required to run those applications.
Swapnil Bhartiya: As a CEO what would be your focus for 2019/2020?
Tim Zonca: My focus will be on growth: to get Stackery in the hands of as many developers as possible and build a real community around it, to expand Stackery’s go-to-market strategy globally via channels and partners, and to continue to build upon and extend our footprint with AWS, cloud providers, and other critical partners in the ecosystem.