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Randy Shoup

VP Engineering and Chief Architect at eBay


Improving eBay's Development Velocity
software development
engineering leadership
software delivery

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This talk outlines eBay’s cross-organizational Velocity initiative to improve engineering productivity and drive better customer outcomes. While eBay's challenges ultimately span culture, organization, people, and technology, we focused our initial efforts on improving software delivery across the board, because eBay’s ability to deliver software rapidly, safely, and repeatably is a prerequisite for every other improvement. Our approach comes straight from the Lean and DevOps community, as expressed in Accelerate, Making Work Visible, Team of Teams, Project to Product, The DevOps Handbook, etc.

The teams we worked with in 2021 (representing ~10% of eBay's development efforts) have seen their productivity double: with the same size and composition, the teams now produce twice the features and bug fixes as before. Equally importantly, working collaboratively and breaking down silos have paid second-order cultural dividends across the company.

This talk will discuss

  • Breaking down silos between product engineering and infrastructure

  • Measuring software delivery performance through the Four Key Metrics from Accelerate

  • Continually reducing build time, startup time, PR validation time, and deployment time

  • Relentlessly focusing on removing individual teams' impediments to fast flow

  • Embedding experts directly in product teams and sharing learnings across the entire organization

We have a (very!) long way to go, and in 2022 we have scaled this initiative to 50% of eBay's development efforts. This session will provide actionable insights for other organizations going through similar journeys.


It's A Long Way To The Top If You Wanna CTO
career development

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Many of us wonder about our career development as an engineer and as an engineering leader. The truth is that there is no single trajectory to success, nor is there a single definition of what success even means. As with all things engineering, everything is a tradeoff, and there is always more than one way to do it.

This talk will explore those tradeoffs, to help you decide where you are going and what to do along the way. Inspired by the great musical philosophers of the 1980s, we will look at various dimensions of career development: Who Do You Want to Be? (Livin' in the) Limelight Should I Stay or Should I Go? Money For Nothing * (I'm on my way, I'm making it) Big Time You will hear some career war stories, take away some actionable insights, and develop a deeper appreciation for classic and progressive rock. (Apologies to AC/DC, Oingo Boingo, Rush, The Clash, Dire Straits, and Peter Gabriel)


Randy has spent more than two decades building distributed systems and high performing teams, and has worked as a senior technology leader at eBay, Google, and Stitch Fix. He coaches CTOs, advises companies, and generally makes a nuisance of himself wherever possible. He talks a lot -- sometimes at conferences about software -- and is interested in the nexus of culture, technology, and organization. He is currently VP Engineering and Chief Architect at eBay.