A Cloud Migration That’s Going Somewhere – the Humana Story with Jon Cwiak

About a year ago I had the pleasure of meeting with Jon Cwiak, an enterprise architect at the insurance giant Humana. I love the Humana story and I’ve been watching them overcome obstacles and challenges along the way – they always move upwards and their cloud migration effort is really starting to gain traction.

Jon’s one of those hero architects I wish were more common in our industry; he’s a purist with a very strong vision of what cloud development and architecture means, but he’s pragmatic and engaging in how teams chart their course to get there. I think you’ll love this discussion, which explores some of the topics we covered in his interview in Achieving DevOps!

A link to the interview is here – and it’s on the podcast platform of your choice. Apple, Google, Spotify, blah blah….

Here’s some of the topics we cover in the podcast:

  • Humana’s swing for the fences with their cloud migration
  • Why do good architects start with empathy – and what impact can this have on a project?
  • “DevOps isn’t a role or a title – it’s a set of practices that you do.”
  • How does Humana build a sense of community, and what 4 pillars do they look at in migrating workflows to the cloud?
  • Does Humana insist on a specific set of tools for monitoring, release, etc?
  • What does monitoring look like at Humana? And what about security – how does Humana handle their data stewardship without overloading engineers?
  • Does everything need to be a microservice? Where does Humana start in peeling off services and flows that would be a good fit for microservices?
  • On COTS products and buy vs build – “You buy for commodity and build for differentiation. I’m not going to build my own log analytics platform – that’s a solved problem. Then I can go on and solve more interesting problems.”
  • Moving away from big, destructive tsunami releases: “Shipping is a feature – do so early and often.”


I really enjoyed my talk with Jon, and I think you will too! Let me know what you think, and enjoy!


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